Via Satellite Announces Tom Choi, Chief Executive Officer, Asia Broadcast Satellite,
Satellite Executive of the Year 2012
Satellite Executive of the Year Award Presentation Luncheon to be held Wednesday, March 20, at the SATELLITE 2013 Conference and Exhibition
ROCKVILLE, Md. – February 13, 2013 — Tom Choi, Chief Executive Officer, Asia Broadcast Satellite (ABS), has been named Via Satellite’s Satellite Executive of the Year for 2012. ABS posted strong financial performance in 2012 with revenues growing by more than 20%, and net profits growing by close to 200% from the prior year. ABS also announced and committed to key satellite industry innovations in 2012.
ABS is a multi-regional satellite operator on the rise. Tom Choi is building an impressive business based on smart acquisitions and aggressive and creative investments in new satellites. Choi lacks nothing in the daring department, and over the last few years, ABS has designed and procured ABS-2, one of the biggest satellites ever commissioned, and worked towards securing financing from the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) to support its ambitious business plans. In November, Ex-Im Bank announced the authorization of two transactions aggregating $461 million to underwrite the export of American-made satellites and American launches for ABS. The pair of transactions will support approximately 3,700 U.S. jobs, according to Bank estimates derived from Departments of Commerce and Labor data and methodology.
The strategy for ABS-2 has been equally impressive. The satellite has more than 12 kW of payload power and up to a total of 89 active C-band, Ku-band and Ka-band transponders across 10 different beams bringing increased capacity and transmission power to the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific, and CIS/Russia. ABS has already sold 60% of the capacity on ABS-2. With deals in the pipeline, this is expected to go beyond the 70% figure at launch. Choi predicts the satellite will reach a 90% utilization rate one year after launch, an impressive feat given the size of the satellite. From a cost recovery perspective, ABS expects the full program cost will be recouped by the second or third year after launch.
Choi has succeeded in putting ABS on the global map in a relatively short period of time, and the future plans for ABS are just as impressive as the recent feats of the company. Just a few years ago, the operator had only one satellite, but Choi has been moving quickly to create a multi-regional powerhouse that is expanding its presence in Africa, Central & Eastern Europe (including Russia), Middle East and South, East and Southeast Asia. Choi operates without fear and aggressively looks to change things, whether by putting together innovative deals for new satellites or financing or making good on existing investments.
“Tom Choi has built up Asia Broadcast Satellite at a remarkable pace,” said Mark Holmes, editor of Via Satellite. “Choi makes brave decisions from acquiring satellites, securing financing, to commissioning new satellites. In 2012, this approach reached a new level when ABS teamed up with Satmex to order four of Boeing’s new 702SP ‘small platform satellites’, and launch them on SpaceX Falcon 9 rockets. These innovations potentially show the way for other regional operators to get better economies of scale when ordering new satellites. Choi has built a strong multi-regional business in a short space of time, with revenues and profits also on an impressive upswing. It is for this combination of impressive results, and innovation that we are proud to recognize Tom Choi as the 2012 Satellite Executive of the Year.”
“We are extremely grateful for this wonderful recognition by the award’s committee of the accomplishments we have been able to achieve at Asia Broadcast Satellite. The building blocks of our success are the numerous partnerships we developed with all of our partners including our loyal customers, innovative vendors, dedicated employees and our supportive shareholders, especially the Permira Funds,” commented Tom Choi, CEO of ABS. “This award is dedicated to each and every one of our partners that have supported our efforts in creating the fastest growing satellite operator in the past 5 years. We thank them for their past contributions and we continue to depend upon them for their support for our future growth and success.”
For more than 20 years, Via Satellite magazine has been honoring the satellite executives who made a lasting business impact on the global satellite market during the previous calendar year.
Via Satellite magazine will showcase Choi in its “Satellite Executive of the Year” cover feature in the March issue. Choi will be presented with his award at the Satellite Executive of the Year award luncheon on Wednesday, March 20, and a reception in his honor will be held that evening. Both events take place during the SATELLITE 2013 Conference and Exhibition, which runs March 18-21 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center at 801 Mount Vernon Place, NW, Washington, DC. For more information or to register, visit www.SATELLITE2013.com.
About Via Satellite
Via Satellite, the satellite community’s leading magazine, keeps its 22,000 global subscribers ‘in the know’ by providing essential news and analysis on the commercial communications, broadcast, military and enterprise sectors of the satellite marketplace. Every issue includes information on current and evolving applications, infrastructure issues, technology, procurement reports and business and regulatory developments around the world.
About SATELLITE 2013
The SATELLITE Conference and Exhibition is the premier event providing solutions to the global satellite end-user community. SATELLITE 2013 will attract more than 12,000 delegates from 75 countries, features 350 exhibiting companies and a full conference program led by more than 300 satellite communications experts and innovators. The 2013 Conference features focused forums on broadcast, enterprise, military and emerging regions. For more information, visit www.SATELLITE2013.com.
About Asia Broadcast Satellite
Asia Broadcast Satellite (ABS) is one of the fastest growing premium satellite operators in the world. ABS offers a complete range of tailored solutions including broadcasting, cellular backhaul, VSAT and Internet backbone services with diverse IP transit through its Asian, African, European and the Middle East internet gateways. ABS’ satellite fleet includes four operational satellites (ABS-1, ABS-1A, ABS-3 and ABS-7) with its fifth satellite (ABS-2) under construction and scheduled to launch in 2013. The ABS-2 satellite will be located in geostationary orbit at 75˚East. Fitted with up to 89 active C, Ku, and Ka-band transponders, it will provide optimized direct TV broadcast, multimedia applications, telecommunications and data transmission services for Asia Pacific, Africa, the Middle East, Europe and Russia/CIS countries. ABS has also ordered two new Boeing 720SP satellites with the options to add more satellites over the next 2-3 years to its growing satellite fleet. For more information, visit www.absatellite.com.