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Discovery launches HD service in Europe via Intelsat

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MUMBAI: Satellite services firm Intelsat has announced that Discovery will use its Pas-12 satellite to provide Discovery HD, the company’s international high-definition network, in Europe.

The signing of Discovery as an anchor tenant on Pas-12 marks the start of a high-powered distribution alternative to new channels looking to deliver HD programming across Europe says Intelsat.

Using capacity on Pas-12, Discovery will provide distribution of Discovery HD, which will originate at its European headquarters in London, to Europe. GlobeCast Europe will uplink the content at its Brookman’s Park teleport in the UK. The signing of the new agreement with Intelsat marks the significant expansion of an already successful relationship, as Intelsat currently provides distribution capacity for Discovery to reach its nearly 1.5 billion cumulative subscribers worldwide.

Discovery executive VP media, technology and operations John Honeycutt says, “High-definition in Europe is fast growing and as the leader in HD programming, Discovery will continue to play a large role in the development and distribution of content and services utilizing this technology.

“We have long relied on Intelsat’s global system to support the implementation of our global distribution strategy.”

Intelsat senior VP, Americas Sales Kurt Riegelman says, “A programmer the caliber of Discovery Communications committing to anchor our new HD neighborhood speaks volumes about the confidence it has in our company and in our system.

“Intelsat has played a significant role in the distribution of HD programming worldwide and is exceedingly dedicated to furthering the advancement of HD in Europe. We believe that Discovery’s desire to distribute HD across the continent signifies a healthy and growing demand which we’re committed to facilitating.”

Intelsat currently operates an HD neighborhood in the US on its Galaxy 13 satellite. The establishment of a new HD satellite for Europe is the company’s first step at expanding full-time HD distribution to other areas of the world.

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