Eutelsat Communications has signed a letter of agreement with Telecom Italia Mobile (TIM) for wholesale capacity on the Eutelsat Konnect and Konnect VHTS satellites which will enable Italian households, even those living in the most isolated areas, to benefit from very high-speed fixed broadband via satellite from January 2021.
Under the agreement, TIM will purchase the entire Italian capacity on Eutelsat Konnect which started operations this month, as well as the vast majority of the capacity covering Italy on the follow-on satellite, Konnect VHTS, once it enters service. TIM will have exclusive rights for the distribution of satellite broadband in Italy on these satellites during the entire lifetime of the contract.
This multi-year agreement is expected to represent a total contract value of almost 150 million euros for Eutelsat. It follows a similar contract with Orange in France for capacity on both satellites, further highlighting the relevance of satellite as a cost-effective, off-the-shelf and reliable infrastructure to extend the coverage of telecom operators beyond the reach of terrestrial networks and ensure ubiquitous coverage of the territory.
In service since November 2020, Eutelsat Konnect has a total capacity of 75 Gbps and is able to assure full or partial coverage of up to 15 countries in Europe and 39 in Africa, offering speeds of up to 100 Mbps to both companies and individuals in the digital divide at competitive monthly rates. The Konnect VHTS satellite will embark the most powerful on-board digital processor ever put into orbit and provide 500 Gbps of Ka-band capacity over Europe, yet further enhancing the service.
Commenting on the agreement, Rodolphe Belmer, CEO of Eutelsat said: “We are delighted to announce this major agreement with TIM which will deliver high-speed broadband to all Italian households. Following the agreement with Orange for France and the acquisition of BBB Europe for retail, this agreement represents another important step in our distribution strategy, enabling us to further secure the ramp-up of our latest capacity and ensuring 2021 is a turning point in Fixed Broadband.”
Luigi Gubitosi, CEO of TIM, added: “This agreement with Eutelsat will enable TIM to accelerate the deployment of high-speed broadband, even to the most remote areas, thereby securing our commitment to reducing the digital divide throughout Italy. The periods of lockdown we have experienced have demonstrated more than ever the need for high speed and reliable connectivity, and we are delighted to be able to rely on Eutelsat’s next-generation capacity to make this a reality for thousands of customers.”