CABSAT and its companion show Satellite MENA return next month as international service providers and technology developers serving the Middle East market come together in the wake of a turbulent, but ultimately positive year for the industry.
What was always expected to be a challenging year, 2009 also saw a number of developments for the broadcast and comms industry that could prove to have long-term benefits far exceeding the difficulties experienced by some since last year’s CABSAT.
Increased competition from new platforms provides continued investment from the telcos and a very active period of mergers and industry consolidation have taken the edge off the economic downturn for many.
“The DTH landscape in the MENA region is now less crowded and on a much more realistic business footing,” says Guy Elliot, managing director of systems integrator ATG Broadcast, who says there is a growing sense of maturity within the regional media sector. “Middle East broadcasters, as in other markets, are looking for systems integration partners who will co-operate with them not just during the planning and installation phases but over the long-term. We maintain a dedicated support department that can be deployed throughout the entire life of a system.”
The rapid growth in the number of FTA channels may have subsided recently but the continued investment in new infrastructure by the remaining stations has been significant. Technology trends led by HD upgrades and digital archiving have played their part as has the pursuit of distribution on new delivery platforms.
Following on from its successful launch last year, the Satellite MENA exhibition returns with a host of leading satellite operators, service providers and infrastructure suppliers demonstrating why the industry continues to thrive despite the wider economic situation.
A number of research reports in the previous 12 months have identified the Middle East and Africa as a key region of growth for the global satellite industry. This interpretation has been confirmed with several operators – including Noorsat, Eutelsat and Intelsat – choosing to expand their coverage for MEA clients. In addition to the expansion of existing satellite capacity providers, the region has also seen two new entrants to the market in as many years with Yahsat and Smartsat set to boost capacity over the Middle East as they launch their hardware in the near future.
This year’s Satellite MENA show will also incorporate the GVF MENASAT Summit 2010, which will focus on the broadband satellite and hybrid applications market.