Thursday, 9 June 2016

CASBAA Satellite Industry Forum 2016: Seizing New Growth Opportunities Amidst Technological and Economic Changes

The emergence of new technologies in the satellite industry, including the arrival of HTS GSO and NGSO systems, is prompting the industry to embrace a substantial shift – from offering one-size-fits-all capacity to creating value propositions better tailored to customers’ fast-growing, diverse demand and the price pressures in dynamic economic circumstances. 
This was a key focus at CASBAA Satellite Industry Forum 2016, attended by close to 200 industry leaders on 30 May at Pan Pacific Singapore. Nine high-level panels discussed a wide range of topics – from the latest strategies in the challenging market landscape, the rise in NGSO systems, to developments in the launch market and perspectives on airline communications, broadband and enterprise solutions.

Demand for superior value proposition
In the Asia Pacific Satellite Leadership Roundtable, key industry leaders agreed that despite cyclical downturns in industries like oil and gas, there is still immense market potential in Asia. 
Panellists highlighted long-term fundamentals for sustained growth in video and broadband data connectivity, which lead to continued investments in growth across the region. These are manifested in initiatives to enhance satellite efficiency and launch new ones to expand capacity.
Amidst intense competition in the industry, the second panel “Is the NGSO Revolution Coming?” discussed the arrival of the NGSO systems as a new alternative for delivering the optimal experience in the most cost-effective manner. Mr. Mark Rigolle, CEO of LeoSat Enterprises, said: “Satellites are now better than terrestrial solutions. Our focus is to be the fastest, most secure network, do it better than fibre and do it better than what satellites have so far been able to do.”
However, beyond debates on seemingly competing technologies – between NGSO and GSO, Ku and Ka bands, terrestrial and satellite – the discussion called for the industry to take a more customer-focused approach. “You want to offer end-to-end services; you don’t want to merely sell bandwidth and MHz. Ultimately, what your customers care about are the end benefits,” said Mr.StéphaneChenard, Senior Associate Consultant, Euroconsult.
While demand for satellite capacity is rapidly increasing, pricing remains low. Panellists in the “The Customer is Always Right – Sometimes” discussion tackled growing customer expectations by advocating for more aggressive business models to attract and retain customers. They also identified video as an emerging opportunity for huge growth potential.   

The way forward for the satellite industry
To close, CEOs of leading satellite businesses discussed the way forward for the satellite industry and the challenges it currently faces. Acknowledging the harsh stock market perceptions of the industry, the key business leaders emphasized that the business realities point towards long-term growth that can be accomplished through continuous innovation.
Summing up the day’s discussions, Mr.Paul Brown-Kenyon, Chairman, CASBAA Satellite Industry Committee and CEO of MEASAT said: “We are at an important transformational place, and the world is changing dramatically. The amount of money we pay for data today is the same as five years ago, but the data we consume is ten times more. I think our business would change, and the role we play in the communications sector would change."
Cable Quest is the offical media partner of the satellite Forum.


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