SES (NYSE Euronext Paris and Luxembourg Stock Exchange: SESG) and KVH Industries (Nasdaq: KVHI), a leading manufacturer of maritime communications solutions, today announced they have signed an expanded capacity agreement to connect luxury, government and commercial ships across Caribbean and beyond.

As part of the multi-year deal, KVH will utilize a 36MHz Ku-band transponder aboard SES’ AMC-21 satellite to provide high-speed internet access and voice over IP services over its mini-VSAT broadband network to vessels traversing the Caribbean, the Gulf of Mexico and coastal waters off the US Eastern Seaboard.

“KVH is expanding its mini-VSAT broadband network capacity around the world to provide mariners with the connectivity they need at sea. This latest agreement with SES is aimed at delivering the reach and reliability a growing number of luxury yachts, commercial vessels and US Coast Guard cutters need to seamlessly operate in deep and coastal waters,” said Brent Bruun, Executive Vice President of KVH’s Mobile Broadband Group. “Our mini-VSAT broadband service is growing at a rate of 35% a year, reflecting our growing customer base and the increased emphasis being placed on improving ship crew welfare and operational efficiencies ranging from real-time data to better voyage planning and reduced emissions.”

The SES-KVH agreement will benefit the US Coast Guard and its mission-critical use of reliable mobile broadband throughout North America. KVH’s pact with the government homeland defence agency represents the largest maritime VSAT agreement to date.

“SES is making unprecedented investments in new satellites, mobility beams and increased capacity across our global fleet to meet the fast-growing demand for connectivity and mobile communications capabilities anywhere, including vital shipping routes around the world,” said John Matlaga, Vice President of Enterprise and Mobility Services for SES’ North American region. “Together, SES and KVH are putting advanced broadband and voice offerings aboard ships and at the fingertips of passengers and crew and playing a major role in keeping them connected and in touch with colleagues and family.”