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Telesat Canada
Industry Telecommunications
Founded 2 May 1969
Headquarters Ottawa, ON, Canada
Key people
Daniel S. Goldberg
Products satellite communications and integration services

Telesat Canada is a Canadian satellite communications company founded on May 2, 1969. The company is headquartered in Ottawa, Ontario as well as having offices in the United States and Brazil.

On October 5, 2007 Loral Space & Communications Inc. and the Public Sector Pension Investment Board of Canada received the final regulatory approval necessary to complete the acquisition of Telesat from BCE Inc. for CAD $3.25 billion. The acquisition closed on October 31, 2007, with Loral owning 64 percent of Telesat.

At the same time, Telesat Canada merged with Loral Skynet, a subsidiary of Loral Space & Communications. Loral Skynet was a full-service global satellite operator headquartered in Bedminster, New Jersey. This resulted in the transfer of all of the assets of Loral Skynet to Telesat.


The company is now the fourth-largest fixed satellite services provider in the world. It owns a fleet of 13 satellites, has one other satellite under construction, and operates 13 additional satellites for other entities.

Telesat carries Canada's two major DBS providers signals: Bell TV and Shaw Direct, as well as more than 200 of Canada's television channels.

Telesat's Anik F2 carries a 'Spot Beam' KA band payload for satellite Internet access for users in the United States (Wildblue) and tens of thousands of users in Canada (Xplornet).[1][2] The KA band system uses 'Spot Beams' to manage bandwidth concerns, linking to multiple satellite ground stations connected to the Internet.

Skynet’s customers included HBO, Disney, Cable & Wireless, Singapore Telecom, Connexion by Boeing, Global Crossing, BT North America, Globecomm Systems, UPC and China Central Television. These are now Telesat customers.

Loral Skynet provided a wide range of video and data transmission services. It became a subsidiary of Loral Space & Communications when Loral acquired it in 1997 from AT&T Corporation.

Skynet’s fleet consists of Telstars-11N, -12, -14R (Estrela do Sul 2), and -18. In 2003, Skynet sold its North American satellite fleet (Telstars 5 through 8 and 13) to Intelsat; they were renamed Intelsat Americas 5–8 and 13. This was done to help reduce debt after its parent, Loral Space & Communications, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on July 15, 2003. As part of the agreement, Skynet was precluded from competing in the North American market until March 18, 2006. In June 2007, Loral Space & Communications made an unsuccessful bid to acquire Intelsat. [1]


Telesat began as Telesat Canada, a Canadian Crown corporation created by an Act of Parliament in 1969.[3]

Telesat launched Anik A1 in 1972 as the world's first domestic communications satellite in geostationary orbit, operated by a commercial company. The satellite was retired from use in 1981.

Until February 1979, Telesat had a legal monopoly on earth stations in Canada: any entity wishing send or receive satellite signals had to sign a long-term lease with Telesat for an earth station; contracts for such leases were still enforced after the monopoly was ended.

Telesat was sold by the federal government to Bell in 1998.[4]

On December 18, 2006, Loral Space & Communications announced that it, along with Canada's Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments), would acquire Telesat for US$2.8b.[5]

On November 17, 2010: Telesat Holdings Inc. hired JPMorgan Chase & Co., Morgan Stanley and Credit Suisse Group AG to start a formal sales process and offer so-called staple financing to interest buyers for $6 billion to $7 billion.[6]

Satellites launched for Telesat[edit]

Main articles: Anik (satellite) and Nimiq

Future satellites[edit]

Telesat has recently[when?] announced plans to build and launch its 20th and 21st satellites.[citation needed]

Telesat announced on December 30, 2009 that Nimiq 6 was built by Space Systems/Loral (SS/L). Bell TV, a Canadian satellite TV provider agreed to fully lease the satellite for its lifetime to serve the subscribers across Canada. Nimiq 6 has a payload of 32 high powered Ku-band transponders. It utlixes the SS/L1300 platform and has a 15 year mission life. It was launched in 2012 by International Launch Services.[7]

Telesat launched Telstar 12 VANTAGE in late 2015 on a H2A204 variant of the H-IIA rocket.[8]


  1. ^ "WildBlue: How it works". Retrieved 2010-11-10. 
  2. ^ "Pricing Announced for New Xplornet Ka-band Satellite Service" (Press release). Xplornet. 2005-04-19. Retrieved 2010-11-10. 
  3. ^ Babe, Robert E. "CONTROL OF TELEPHONES: THE CANADIAN EXPERIENCE". Canadian Journal of Communication. 13 (2). 
  4. ^ "Canadian Satellite Television". Retrieved 12 July 2015. 
  5. ^ "Loral and PSP Investments agree to acquire Telesat Canada" (Press release). Loral Space & Communications. 2006-12-18. Retrieved 2006-12-12. 
  6. ^ "Top Stories: Business and Finance". Retrieved 15 April 2015. 
  7. ^ "ILS Wins Nimiq 6 Launch" Satellite Today 18 March 2010
  8. ^ "Telesat Orders High Throughput Satellite to Replace Telstar 12 and Expand Capacity at 15 Degrees West". Retrieved 15 April 2015. 

External links[edit]