In an unsollicited bid, French telecom Billionaire Patrick Drahi (SFR) proposes 3.2B$ to purchase Eutelsat, 25% over the average shares value during the past 12 months. Eutelsat rejected the offer, however, this may just be the begining as apparently discussions are still ongoing and the French governement did not block the talks.
While the strategic reasons for this proposal are unclear at this stage, here are a few comments:
- the convergence of satellite and telcos are at the begining, especially with the 5G. Telcos such as Vodafone have already invested in space operators seing a possibility to merge terrestrial and satellite technologies
- Eutelsat recently invested 500M€ in OneWEB, one of the new constellations that will provide broadband internet everywhere. this might be an opportunity for Drahi to position his businesses there, in competition with Starlink and others as at thgis stage there is no European player in this field.
- Eutelsat has been lagging for several years with negative growth and an unclear strategy. The value of the company makes it attractive for a takeover and Drahi is famous for taking the most from the companies he buys.
This is probably just another step in the great Space sharout in front of us!