50 high-level jobs for Dublin in new satellite venture

18 Jun 2008

Up to 50 high-level jobs will be created in Dublin over the next three years by a new satellite communications enterprise.

Solaris Mobile is a new joint venture company from SES Astra SA and the Eutelsat Communications SA, Europe’s two leading satellite operators. The corporate headquarters of Solaris Mobile will be established in Dublin.

The new company will specialise in the emerging market for mobile satellite services in Europe. Its two parent companies have to date invested €130m in a new satellite to drive these services.

All the new positions for the corporate headquarters will require a third-level qualification, with knowledge of the space, telecoms, regulatory or mobile industries. IDA Ireland worked closely with SES Astra and Eutelsat to win this project for Ireland and to assist them in establishing the operation.

The satellite supporting the new service has been under construction since October 2006 and is scheduled for launch in early 2009. The Dublin HQ will have responsibility for all corporate functions, including regulatory support, sales and marketing, communications and brand awareness, finance and billing, compliance and legal for the European market.

It will also be responsible for identifying new business opportunities, negotiating and managing partnerships with international broadcasters, content developers, network operators and mobile phone handset manufacturers.

Solaris Mobile’s new infrastructure will enable the broadcasting of TV, video and radio, as well as providing a platform for new, two-way communication services to handheld mobile devices.

The infrastructure will also enable the deployment of a fully-fledged TV experience on mobile devices on an ‘anytime and anywhere’ basis and, for the first time, will allow satellite infrastructure to compete and complement with existing terrestrial networks for the provision of broadcasting services to the mobile sector.

“This project is the first investment in Ireland by international satellite operators and as such is a unique investment for the country, particularly as it is being made by two of the highest profile brand-name companies in the global satellite communications industry,” commented

Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Mary Coughlan TD.

“The sophisticated technical qualifications, knowledge and experience requirements of the new positions is once again a significant endorsement of Ireland’s wealth of talent and expertise.  It is also a measure of the confidence which leading global companies have in the ability of this country to deliver on projects at the forefront of their industry.  This project will provide an important marketing reference for IDA’s continuing work to attract new business within the mobile, media and telecommunications sectors.”

“Solaris Mobile is of major strategic importance to both our parent companies as it seeks a first mover advantage within the European market for the commercial delivery of TV and other broadband services to mobile phones and other portable devices via satellite,” said Steve Maine, CEO, Solaris Mobile.

“It also represents the first joint venture between the two companies who are combining their industry-leading experience and expertise in data and video broadcasting, as well as in two-way services, to support Solaris Mobile. With so much at stake, we needed to find the right location in Europe for our corporate headquarters. Following a detailed assessment of a number of locations across Europe, we decided that Ireland would deliver this project to the tight deadlines required and would be best at ensuring its successful development to the most stringent standards.”

By Niall Byrne