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FOCAL POINT: SatLink’s Gateway To Asia

Asia represents an enormous challenge to companies who wish to penetrate this region’s broadcast markets. With a plethora of languages, religions, and political cultures, Asia presents a varied geographical makeup, which makes for an exciting, yet daunting, business market.

Corporations, whether local, national, or international, must pay close attention to local and national elements in order for a successful business foray. The nuances of each and every operating environment tell a story — for international entities entering Asia, paying attention to the stories that create the local environment are the key to success.

Business models require broadcasters and networks, telecom, and IP providers to reach as many populations as possible. This requires proper planning, uncovering the correct mix of content segmentation, as well as selecting the correct transport vehicle to satisfy the challenge.

The ultimate platform is one whose footprint encompasses population centers and has extensive depth, range, and penetration; one large enough to handle ample traffic; one that can handle HD applications and, finally, one with superb technical specifications. Behind this platform there needs to be an adept technical staff to handle all manner of support needs, one that can perform the appropriate tasks at the proper times and working in facilities that can meet changing needs.

The experience of SatLink Communications as a gateway to and from the Asian market is one of success. The global satellite communications services provider has developed its geographically strategic located facilities in the rich Judean Hills outside of Jerusalem to offer services and platforms to and from Asia. Sitting atop a wooded ridge in the Holy Land, the company is a leading provider of tailor made transmission solutions for Global Content Distribution with advanced teleport facilities and fiber networks to enhance the global presence of its clients’ brands as well as its own. Named as one of the Top 20 Independent Teleports by the World Teleport Association in 2009, the company provides access to a worldwide network covering five continents. The Company supplies broadcast, IPTV, government, and private corporation clients with flexible transmission solutions via multiple satellite platforms, fiber and IP. Recognition for its business and technical acumen has come from companies such as SES NewSkies, AsiaSat, and Hellas Sat who have designated SatLink Communications as their official Middle East port of choice for moving content between Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.

To enhance its ground facilities, the company has developed a sound strategy of creating a space presence in the form of various MCPCs (Multiple Channels Per Carrier) platforms. By linking the ground station to leading satellites around the globe and a world-wide fiber network, the company is able to offer full service solutions, especially for HD and SD broadcasters, networks, operators, and telecoms seeking to connect far-flung audiences or to open new markets. SatLink operates a range of premier MCPC platforms on AsiaSat 2, HotBird 8, Galaxy 19, Sirius 4A (Astra 4), Eutelsat W2, Eurobird 9, Hellas Sat, Amos and others. SatLink Communication’s far-flung fiber network stretches from New Zealand and Australia to Hong Kong and Singapore, to Europe and the Mediterranean, and to North, Latin, and South America.

For the Asia-Pacific market, SatLink operates two digital MCPC platforms on AsiaSat 2. At 100.5 degrees East, this satellite provides regional power and coverage with a C-band beam reaching China, India, Indonesia and other mass markets. For Asian networks moving into Europe, North America, and Africa, the Company uses its MCPC resources on the most popular DTH (Direct to Home) satellites such as Hot Bird, Galaxy 19 and Sirius 4 (Astra 4).

In the case of occasional use, the EBU (European Broadcast Union) used SatLink as the primary backbone for its 2008 Beijing Olympic coverage, sending footage from China over AsiaSat 2 to SatLink’s facilities, where it was fibered directly to the EBU facilities in Geneva. Reuters and APTN, two of the world’s leading providers of broadcast materials including news and entertainment, employ the Company for contribution and distribution of their materials to and from Asia on a daily basis.

HD is another upgraded technology — early in 2009, SatLink expanded its HD transmission capabilities to as many as 12 simultaneous streams, including feed encoding, decoding and multiplexing. This investment makes SatLink the first operator in the region to possess complete end-to-end HD teleport facilities with a dozen simultaneous feeds. The new HD systems comply with the standards of top global sports rights holders and add a new layer of technologically advanced services, making SatLink a major gateway to and from Asia for sports, news, and special occasional events. The technology enables the company to meet its partners’ growing needs for HD entertainment programming for sports offerings such as UEFA football matches (starting later in 2009), nature shows and films, with services including the encoding, encrypting, and multiplexing of multiple HD feeds. The systems also enables the insertion of different languages into the streams prior to re-transmission and distribution, as well as down conversion of HD to SD and vice versa.

For SD and HD broadcasters and networks seeking entry into the Asia Pacific region, the SatLink’s experience is also compelling. Currently, the Company is providing a strong neighborhood on its platforms and providing these broadcasters with comprehensive transmission solutions. This includes downlinking the signal to SatLink’s teleport with its more than 80 earth stations, or receiving the signal via SatLink’s global fiber network, or using SatLink’s advanced Playout centers. The signal can be uplinked for contribution to cable head-ends, re-broadcasters, as well as for distribution to individual home viewers. A complementary service, the company also offers a dedicated channel distribution manager for assisting clients on the AsiaSat 2 platform to penetrate the complicated Asia Pacific market.

Networks seeking to expand coverage into Asia are finding a fertile neighborhood on SatLink’s Asian MCPCs. On Asia’s prime satellite AsiaSat 2, the prestigious International Club de Bruges bouquet includes such leading European international TV channels as RAI International, TVE, RTP Planeta and others. They are joined by others: LUX HD and euronews, in addition to AsiaSat 2’s spiritual bouquet including channels such as Daystar Network, God’s Learning Channel (GLC), Cancao Nova and The Supreme Master Network that are broadcasting their messages into the continent. The Company is targeting the flourishing spiritual and religious market due to its location in the Holy Land where the company provides clients with production and SNG services as well as distribution directly to the entire globe.

Sports also carries a high priority on SatLink’s lists. The company offers rights-holders, pay-per-view networks, and global sporting brands the ability to reach markets and directly engage spectators and fans. With its new HD facilities, the organization brings the action and excitement of sports to a new level of viewing pleasure. In fact, the company is currently working to create a package for FIFA’s 2010 World Cup Football matches in South Africa to the rest of the world.

The satellite communications industry is able to take advantage of SatLink’s geographic location to link continents and extend coverage as well as to undertake sophisticated technical projects. A case in point is SatLink’s TT&C and E.I.R.P. services to satellite operators and satellite owners. Based on its technical expertise and transmission facilities, SatLink offers satellite engineering services including satellite beam measurements and performance, satellite tracking and command, and traffic management multi-beams measurements, and hub hosting.

In addition, SatLink’s staff is fully capable of technically challenging projects done off site. In Nagoya, Japan, the company brought together its skill sets to develop and implement a full scale DTH turnkey project for a client. Implemented on time and on budget, SatLink worked side-by-side with its Japanese partners and completed the project to everyone’s satisfaction.

According to Satlink CEO Mr. David Hochner, “We are positioning ourselves to be the communications provider of choice for international broadcast services, networks and news agencies seeking to maximize coverage in Asia and around the world. In a dynamic industry, satellite owners, networks, broadcasters and governments trust in SatLink for our reliable high service, creative technical solutions and comprehensive satellite and fiber capabilities.”

“Our commitment to the future of broadcasting and media transmission guides SatLink’s steps and strategy. Integrating HD and multiplexing confirms our allegiance to providing high end solutions with the highest service level and we look forward to serving our clients in the years to come.”