By Andy Sambidge
Satellite operator says it will expand commercial coverage to additional 600 million users
Yahsat, the UAE-based satellite operator, has announced plans to launch its third satellite in 2016, extending their commercial Ka-band coverage to an additional 17 countries and 600 million users.
This third satellite places Yahsat, a wholly owned company of the Mubadala Development Company, as the world's eighth largest operator in terms of revenue, it said in a statement.
Homaid Al Shemmari, CEO of Aerospace and Engineering Services at Mubadala, said: "Yahsat is one of the UAE's great success stories. With the launch of Al Yah 3, we are well positioned to reach our goal of becoming a global leader in the provision of advanced satellite services.
"The launch of the company's third satellite within less than a decade of operation is a clear signal of the UAE aerospace industry's intentions for the future."
He said Al Yah 3 will create new career opportunities for UAE Nationals, through a new programme, which will allow a select group of students to follow the end-to-end satellite manufacturing process.
Jassem Bu Ataba Al Zaabi, chairman of Yahsat, said: "The UAE is rapidly developing as a key player in the global satellite industry, becoming the region's hub for satellite innovation.
"With the support of our leadership, customers, partners and suppliers, Yahsat is the leading regional operator for the deployment of government satellite communication programs, as well as pioneering innovative commercial platforms. The next goal is to make our value proposition a global one."
Masood M Sharif Mahmood, Yahsat CEO added: "Al Yah 3 marks another milestone for Yahsat, expanding our footprint to new markets and reinforcing our vision to be the global partner of choice for reliable, innovative and affordable satellite solutions.
"The success of both Y1A and Y1B in providing government, NGO, consumer and corporate services has given us the drive to explore new growth avenues."
Al Yah 3 will use the most advanced technology available in the market, will extend the company's commercial Ka-band coverage across the African continent and will for the first time cover South America.
The service will provide wide reaching, reliable and cost effective satellite broadband and internet connectivity to unserved and underserved communities, consumers, enterprises and telecom operators, Yahsat said.
Yahsat added that it will soon announce its partners for the manufacture and launch of Al Yah 3.