Performance highlights include: operating Vertical revenues of 273m; robust double-digit growth in mobile connectivity; multi-year, multi-million euro contract with Marlink; and approval of Eutelsat/OneWeb combination project.
Eutelsat Communications has reported its revenues for the first quarter ended 30 September 2023.
Total revenues for the First Quarter stood at €274m, down 4.7% on a reported basis, and by 0.8% like-for-like. Revenues of the four Operating Verticals (excluding “Other Revenues”) stood at €273m. They were down by 2.4% on a like-for-like basis excluding a negative currency effect of €8m, as well as a negative perimeter effect of c. -1 point from the disposal of the BigBlu retail broadband operations in late June 2023.Quarter-on-quarter, revenues of the four Operating Verticals were down by 2.3% like-for-like. Excluding a one-off contract booked in Q4 FY 2022-23 in Government Services, revenues of the four Operating Verticals were up by 2.9% like-for-like.
First Quarter Video revenues amounted to €164m (60% of revenues), down 9.5% year-on-year, reflecting the impact of the early non-renewal of a capacity contract with Digitürk from mid-November 2022. They were also impacted by the effect of sanctions against certain Russian and Iranian channels. Professional Video revenues, which account for under 10% of the Video vertical, also decreased, reflecting lower occasional use. On a quarter-on-quarter basis, revenues were down by 3.4%, reflecting lower revenues in Europe. Looking ahead, Video revenues are expected broadly in line with the wider market trend of a mid-single digit decline, excluding the effect of Russian and Iranian sanctions which will be embarked for a full 12 months versus six months in FY 2022-23.
First Quarter Government Services revenues stood at €34m (12% of revenue), up 1.1% year-on-year. This rise reflected the contribution of the EGNOS GEO-4 contract on HOTBIRD 13G. On a quarter-on-quarter basis, revenues were down by 25.2%. Excluding the abovementioned one-off DLR contract in Q4 FY 2022-23 (c. €14m), First Quarter revenues were up 9.5% on a quarter-on-quarter basis, on the back of increasing traction with European customers. The latest renewal campaign with the US Department of Defence (Fall 2023) resulted in a slightly improved renewal rate of above 80%. Over the Full Year, Government Services revenues will benefit from the abovementioned EGNOS Geo4 contract on HOTBIRD 13G, set to generate €100m in revenues over 15 years, as well as the contribution from OneWeb’s LEO-enabled connectivity solutions, offering global coverage and lower latency.
First Quarter Mobile Connectivity revenues stood at €35 million (13% of revenues), up by 44.1 % year-on-year. This reflected the commercialisation of the final beam on Eutelsat Quantum for a maritime mobility client. The eight beams of this satellite are now fully commercialised, just 18 months after its entry into service. Revenues also benefited from the entry into service of the high-throughput satellite, Eutelsat 10B, with significant pre-commitments and recent deals, especially in Maritime, such as the multi-year, multimillion contract with Marlink, a leading provider of connectivity solutions.
On a quarter-on-quarter basis, revenues were up by 29.8%. For the Full Year, mobile connectivity is expected to see double-digit growth driven by strong demand for both GEO and LEO-based connectivity solutions.
First Quarter Fixed Connectivity revenues stood at €40m (15% of revenues), down by 2.6% year-on-year. They include the contribution from the wholesale agreements with Orange, TIM, Hispasat and Swisscom, which is now fully embarked.
On a quarter-on-quarter basis, revenues were up 6.5%, notably on the back of the resale of OneWeb capacity for data usages in Alaska. Over the Full Year, Fixed Connectivity is set to deliver double-digit growth on the back of the entry into service of Konnect VHTS as well as the contribution from LEO connectivity offers.
“Other Revenues” amounted to €2m in the First Quarter versus minus 3m a year earlier and minus €5m in the Fourth Quarter of FY 2022-23. They included a neutral impact from hedging operations in the First Quarter versus negative impacts of respectively €5m in the First Quarter, and €1m in the Fourth Quarter of 2022-23.
The backlog stood at €3.4bn at 30 September 2023, broadly stable versus end-June 2023. The consumption of the Video backlog, in the absence of major renewals, was offset by strong commercial momentum in Connectivity, reflecting the rebalancing of the business towards growth verticals. The backlog was equivalent to 3.0 times FY 2022-23 revenues, with Video representing 57% of the total. OneWeb’s backlog amounted to c. $1bn at end-September 2023. It included the $275m Take-or-Pay Agreement signed with Eutelsat in July 2022.
Following the approval in late September 2023 of the combination with OneWeb, the financial objectives of Eutelsat Group replace the previous financial objectives of Eutelsat standalone. These financial objectives are confirmed as follows (at a €/$ rate of 1.00):
Revenues of Eutelsat Group are expected to grow at a double-digit revenue CAGR over the medium to long-term, reaching €1.32 1.42bn in FY 2024, €1.55-1.75bn in FY 2025, and c.€2.0bn in FY 2027.
• Adjusted EBITDA for Eutelsat Group is expected to grow at a double digit CAGR over the same period, outpacing revenues growth, rising from a range of €725m to €825m in FY 2024 to €900m to €1.1bn in FY 2025, and c. €1.4bn in FY 2027.
• After synergies, the cash capex of Eutelsat Group is estimated to be at €725m to €875m per annum on average, over the period FY 2024 to FY 2030, with a front-end loaded profile.
• Leverage, which stood at c. 4x net debt / adjusted EBITDA pro forma end of June 2023, is expected to be reduced on the back of strong adjusted EBITDA growth, backed by a disciplined financial policy, with an objective of leverage of c. 3x in the medium term.