France Telecom has signed an agreement with Apax Partners to sell 100 percent of the shares of France Telecom Mobile Satellite Communications SA (FTMSC). The completion of the transaction is expected in the near future. FTMSC is one of the world’s largest mobile
satellite communications providers, marketing and distributing communications solutions for customers based in areas with limited access to terrestrial telecoms infrastructure. Apax Partners is one of the world’s leading private equity investment groups. Its funds invest in specific industries including telecoms, and provide long-term equity financing to build and strengthen world-class companies. This deal will enable FTMSC to consolidate its position on the international mobile satellite communications market. FTMSC’s service operator strategy is based on long-term partnerships with all leading mobile satellite communications operators (Inmarsat, Thuraya, Iridium etc.). FTMSC combines their maritime and land mobile services with airtime, hardware, in-house developed applications and customised solutions, offering one of the most complete portfolios on the market. In 2005, FTMSC posted revenues of $201m.