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U.S. Satellite Industry Wins Sale for Major Satellite Project with Ex-Im Bank Financing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 22, 2009

Media Contact Name/Phone: 

Marianna Ohe (202-565-3200)

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- U.S. satellite equipment makers from coast to coast will sell $237 million of equipment and services to Avanti Communications of London to launch the Hylas 2 satellite, backed by a $215.6 million direct loan from the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank).

Orbital Sciences Corportion, Dulles, Va. will provide a 8,230-MHz Ka-band telecommunications satellite for the project. Hughes Network Systems, Germantown, Md.; STM Group, Inc., Irvine, Calif.; and General Dynamics SATCOM Technologies, Duluth, Ga., will provide satellite dish and related ground segment infrastructure. Marsh & McLennan, New York, N.Y., has been designated to provide launch insurance. Many additional U.S. suppliers and sub-suppliers will contribute to the project.

The Hylas 2 satellite will be sent aloft on an Arianespace launcher in March 2012. It will enable Avanti to more than triple the capacity of its first Ka-band satellite, Hylas 1, which will be launched in the first half of 2010. Hylas 2 will expand Avanti's Eastern European coverage and provide new coverage in the Middle East and Africa. The London-based company sells satellite broadband to service providers, who in turn sell to consumers and businesses.

During these difficult economic times, we are particularly pleased to support companies like Orbital, which has long been a strong and reliable U.S. manufacturer of top quality satellites, said Fred P. Hochberg, Ex-Im Bank chairman and president. This transaction not only will spur American industry and job growth. It also is expected lead to substantial follow-on business in the export of satellite user terminals.

The involvement of Ex-Im Bank was very important to the success of U.S.-based Orbital in the competition for this new satellite contract, said Mr. Garrett E. Pierce, vice chairman and chief financial officer of Orbital Sciences Corporation, the manufacturer of Avanti's HYLAS 2 satellite.

With each new communications satellite contract we book, hundreds of U.S.-based high-tech jobs are created or sustained, not only at Orbital, but also at the numerous suppliers of subsystems that are incorporated into our state-of-the-art spacecraft design. From larger companies like Orbital, to medium-size and small businesses, we all benefit from Ex-Im Bank's activities that contribute to a stronger and more competitive U.S. economy, Pierce added.

Ex-Im Bank is the official export-credit agency of the United States. The independent, self-sustaining federal agency, now in its 75th year, helps to create and maintain U.S. jobs by financing the sales of U.S. exports, primarily to emerging markets throughout the world, by providing loan guarantees, export-credit insurance and direct loans.

In fiscal year 2009, Ex-Im Bank authorized more than $21 billion in support of U.S. exports overall, the highest level in the Bank's 75-year history, to help ease tightened liquidity during the economic crisis. Ex-Im Bank also set a record for financing of small business exports at $4.36 billion in fiscal 2009. More information is available on the Bank's web site at www.exim.gov.