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Photo credit: (Express Wi-fi by Facebook)
Photo credit: (Express Wi-fi by Facebook)

Press release -

Eutelsat expands use of Express Wi-Fi in partnership with Facebook to extend Wi-Fi connectivity throughout Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Leveraging the Express Wi-Fi platform and EUTELSAT KONNECT to expand satellite broadband in rural and underserved communities
  • Showcasing the power of satellite connectivity to bridge the digital divide

Paris, 7 May 2021 – Eutelsat Communications (Euronext Paris: ETL) is expanding its use of the Express Wi-Fi platform in partnership with Facebook to provide broadband services via satellite across several regions in Sub-Saharan Africa. With Express Wi-Fi, Eutelsat aims to connect thousands of people in rural and underserved communities spanning Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Nigeria, Côte d'Ivoire, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Kenya, Madagascar, South Africa, Cameroon, Ghana and Zimbabwe.

Express Wi-Fi is a platform developed by Facebook Connectivity that enables partners to build, grow and monetize their Wi-Fi businesses in a scalable way, while providing their customers with fast, affordable, and reliable internet access. Express Wi-Fi is used in more than 30 countries, including in multiple Asian, South American and African markets, helping millions of people connect over Wi-Fi.

Eutelsat and Facebook have previously conducted successful pilots in rural and underserved areas of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) enabling local businesses to offer affordable internet access to customers on a pre-paid basis. To date, Eutelsat’s use of the Express Wi-Fi platform has enabled access to affordable broadband for thousands of individuals across the DRC.

Philippe Baudrier, General Manager of Konnect Africa commented: “We are delighted to partner with Facebook in this ambitious scheme, aimed at getting more people online in the most underserved areas of sub-Saharan Africa. This initiative is the perfect example of the power of satellite connectivity to bridge the digital divide, with unmatched economic and social benefits. We are proud once again to leverage the unparalleled coverage of EUTELSAT KONNECT to satisfy this growing demand.”

“At Facebook, we’re committed to working with partners to help expand connectivity in Sub-Saharan Africa, which continues to be the region with the highest coverage gap,” said Fargani Tambeayuk, Head of Connectivity Policy for Sub-Saharan Africa, Facebook. “Connectivity is essential to ensuring access to jobs, education, healthcare and more. We’re proud to partner with Eutelsat to combine the power of the Express Wi-Fi platform and EUTELSAT KONNECT, with the goal of increasing satellite broadband coverage across rural and underserved areas of Sub-Saharan Africa.”

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About Eutelsat Communications

Founded in 1977, Eutelsat Communications is one of the world's leading satellite operators. With a global fleet of satellites and associated ground infrastructure, Eutelsat enables clients across Video, Data, Government, Fixed and Mobile Broadband markets to communicate effectively to their customers, irrespective of their location. Over 6 600 television channels operated by leading media groups are broadcast by Eutelsat to one billion viewers equipped for DTH reception or connected to terrestrial networks. Headquartered in Paris, with offices and teleports around the globe, Eutelsat assembles 1,200 men and women from 50 countries who are dedicated to delivering the highest quality of service.

Eutelsat Communications is listed on the Euronext Paris Stock Exchange (ticker: ETL).

For more about Eutelsat go to www.eutelsat.com

Media enquiries
Joanna Darlington Tel.:  + 33 1 53 98 31 07 jdarlington@eutelsat.com
Marie Sophie Ecuer Tel.: + 33 1 53 98 32 45 mecuer@eutelsat.com
Jessica Whyte Tel.:+ 33 1 53 98 46 21 jwhyte@eutelsat.com
Investors
Joanna Darlington Tel.: +33 1 53 98 31 07   jdarlington@eutelsat.com
Cédric Pugni Tel.: +33 1 53 98 31 54 cpugni@eutelsat.com
Alexandre Illouz Tel.: +33 1 53 98 46 81 aillouz@eutelsat.com

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About Facebook Connectivity

Connectivity is at the heart of Facebook’s mission to give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together. Critical to this mission is high-quality internet access, which gives people a voice and creates opportunities to share knowledge that can strengthen local communities and global economies. Facebook Connectivity works closely with partners including mobile network operators, equipment manufacturers and more to develop programs and technologies—including Express WiFi, Magma and Terragraph—that increase the availability, affordability and awareness of high-quality internet access, bringing more people online to a faster internet. To learn more, visit: https://connectivity.fb.com