Surrey Satellite sale

EADS Astrium, Europe’s leading space equipment maker, has completed the acquisition of Surrey University spin-off company Surrey Satellite Technology.


EADS Astrium, Europe’s leading space equipment maker, has completed the acquisition of Surrey University spin-off company Surrey Satellite Technology (SSTL).


The deal follows regulatory approval from the European Commission (EC) after SurreyUniversity’s decision to dispose of its 85 per cent stake in the company.


Under the terms of the agreement, SSTL will be owned by EADS Astrium in the Netherlands, but will operate as an independent company in the UK.


SSTL, which has built its reputation on the development of small satellites and subsystems, will benefit from the agreement by gaining access to greater resources and advancing research into new technology.


Astrium’s European links are also expected to bring regional benefits to the south east’s aerospace industry and improve the research capabilities of SSTL and SurreyUniversity.


Prof Sir Martin Sweeting, executive chairman at SSTL, said: ‘This acquisition is essential for SSTL, both in enabling our future plans and maintaining the ability to expand our research and development investment in competitive new technologies.


‘Being part of Europe’s leading space company will considerably strengthen SSTL’s market position.’


Cohn Paynter, chief executive of Astrium’s UK division, said: ‘The UK space industry is in a strong position at present – at Astrium we have a healthy order book and we are recruiting engineers, scientists and technicians to build telecommunication, Earth observation, navigation and scientific satellites.


 


‘Acquiring SSTL means we will have a substantial complement to what we can offer customers around the world.’