The US Department of Defense (DoD) has awarded the government communications arm of SES a communications contract to use the O3b satellite constellation in Medium Earth Orbit (MEO). The value of the five-year deal is US$516.7 million including services, terminals, and backhaul.

Comment: While relatively small beer compared to its other revenues, the significance of this lies in SES breaking into the US military communications business in a long term way. Nevertheless, there will be some issues. A new ban on the US using satellites launched by Russia rockets after 2023 will mean that O3b satellites will not be able to fly on Soyuz again.