EADS Astrium acquires Surrey Satellite Technology Limited

  EADS Astrium acquires Surrey Satellite Technology Limited

  *EADS Astrium acquires world leader in small satellites Surrey Satellite
    Technology Limited (SSTL)
  *Acquisition completed following EC approval
  *SSTL will remain an independent company with its own brand identity

Business Wire

STEVENAGE & GUILDFORD, England -- January 13, 2009

EADS Astrium, Europe’s leading space company, has acquired Surrey Satellite
Technology Limited (SSTL), the innovative University of Surrey spin-out
company which specialises in the design and manufacture of small satellites
and subsystems. This acquisition follows the approval of the European
Commission in December 2008 and was announced by EADS CEO Louis Gallois today
at his January briefing for the media.

“This is great news that we have acquired SSTL. The UK space industry is in a
strong position at present – at Astrium we have a healthy order book and we
are recruiting engineers, scientists and technicians to build
telecommunication and scientific satellites. Acquiring SSTL means we will have
a substantial complement to what we can offer customers around the world –
SSTL has expertise in small satellites and an innovative approach to
developing new markets for space.” said Colin Paynter, CEO of Astrium in the

Professor Sir Martin Sweeting, Executive Chairman of SSTL, said: “This
acquisition is essential for SSTL, both in enabling our future plans and
maintaining and expanding our R&D investment in competitive new technologies.
Being part of Europe’s leading space company will considerably strengthen
SSTL’s market position.”

SSTL joins EADS Astrium following a decision by the University of Surrey to
sell its majority stake of 85% in the small satellite manufacturer. SSTL will
remain an independent UK company with its individual brand and unique approach
to space whilst benefiting from access to significant financial resources to
support the Company's growth. Astrium will benefit from enhanced links with
the University of Surrey to support staff training and development, also
leading to greater cooperation and increased research on space technology and

SSTL has built its worldwide reputation in small satellites through the
development of innovative technologies which have lowered the cost of
operational space missions with real world applications, such as GIOVE-A,
providing in-orbit validation for the Galileo programme, and the RapidEye and
DMCconstellations providing commercial Earth observation services. The
Company have recently added a small geostationary platform to their product
range as well as very high resolution imaging systems for small satellite

EADS Astrium is one of the world’s leaders for its expertise in space
transportation, spacecraft and satellite services including prime contractor
for Ariane 5, the Columbus space laboratory and the Automated Transfer Vehicle
for the International Space Station, and its leading-edge large and complex
geostationary telecommunications satellites, and the Skynet 5 secure
communications system for the UK Ministry of Defence. SSTL will complement
Astrium UK’s existing space capabilities that include space transportation,
satellites and services.

Under the share purchase agreement, SSTL will be owned by EADS Astrium NV in
the Netherlands.

The acquisition will enhance long-term research collaboration between the
University of Surrey and Astrium and will further advance the University’s
cutting edge space research capacity. The sale will support the already-strong
presence that Guildford and the south-east have in the aeronautical and space
industries, creating a centre of expertise for space technology. This will
allow for the region to benefit from the Government’s commitment to invest in
the UK space industry.

About SSTL SSTL develops innovative technologies to change the economics of
space, delivering cost effective satellite missions within rapid timescales.
The company is a world leader in the design, manufacture and operation of high
performance small satellites with experience gained over more than 25 years
and 32 satellites launched.

SSTL employs 300 staff working on LEO, MEO, GEO and interplanetary missions,
turnkey satellite platforms and space-proven satellite subsystems and optical
systems. The company also provides training and development programmes and
consultancy services, and performs studies for ESA, NASA and commercial
customers related to platform design, mission analysis and planning.

Based in Guildford, UK, SSTL is owned by EADS Astrium NV. www.sstl.co.uk

About Astrium Astrium, a wholly owned subsidiary of EADS, is dedicated to
providing civil and defence space systems and services. In 2007, Astrium had a
turnover of €3.5 billion and 12,000 employees in France, Germany, the United
Kingdom, Spain and the Netherlands. Its three main areas of activity are
Astrium Space Transportation for launchers and orbital infrastructure, and
Astrium Satellites for spacecraft and ground segment, and its wholly owned
subsidiary Astrium Services for the development and delivery of satellite
services. In the UK, Astrium employs more than 3,000 space engineers,
scientists and technicians.

EADS is a global leader in aerospace, defence and related services. In 2007,
EADS generated revenues of €39.1 billion and employed a workforce of more than

Notes to editor: This press release can be downloaded from the SSTL online
press room : http://www.ballard.co.uk/sstl/

A podcast in which Sir Martin Sweeting discusses the sale is available to play
online at: http://www.engineeringbritain.com/spaced_out/ For broadcast quality
audio please contact Stephen Ballard.


SSTL Media Contacts:
Robin Wolstenholme
Phone: +44 (0) 1 30 688 22 88
Stephen Ballard
Phone: +44 (0) 1 30 688 22 88
EADS Astrium Media Contacts:
Jeremy Close (Astrium UK)
Phone: +44 (0)1 438 77 3872
Matthieu Duvelleroy (Astrium FR)
Phone: +33 (0) 1 77 75 80 32
Mathias Pikelj (Astrium GER)
Phone: + 49 (0) 7545 89123
Francisco Lechón (Astrium SP)
Phone: + 34 91 586 37 41
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