Headlines > News > Arianespace and Japan: building on a long-term relationship

Arianespace and Japan: building on a long-term relationship

Published by Sigurd De Keyser on Sat Apr 28, 2007 9:48 pm
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Japan continues its role as a key partner for Arianespace – with a growing number of new Japanese commercial payloads to be orbited and launch services cooperation being developed.

During a visit to Tokyo this week, Chairman and CEO Jean-Yves Le Gall underscored the importance of Arianespace’s relationship with Japan – which dates back to the company’s establishment of an in-country office during 1986, and its launch of the first Japanese commercial satellite in 1989.

To date, 23 out of Japan’s 32 commercial launch contracts have been entrusted to Arianespace. In addition, it is the only service provider receiving Japanese orders for payloads to be lofted on a new-generation heavy launcher.

Le Gall noted that in the next 12 months, Arianespace will launch three payloads for Japanese satellite operators: BSAT-3A for B-SAT Corporation, Horizons-2 for JSAT Corporation, and Superbird-7 for Space Communications corporation.

“I want to express my appreciation to all of you for helping us achieve such a busy pace,” Le Gall told invited guests at Arianespace’s customer and industry reception in Tokyo today.

During Le Gall’s visit, Arianespace announced an agreement with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) to combine their satellite launch offerings for Ariane 5 and H-IIA to better serve customers worldwide. As a result, Arianespace and MHI will be able to jointly propose launch services with the flexibility of orbiting a customer’s satellite on either of these two vehicles.

This represents a further step in the commercial cooperation of Arianespace and MHI since the inception of the very successful Launch Services Alliance in 2003, which provides back-up launch services.

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