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Telesat net earnings up $9.5 million

Ottawa, - Telesat Canada, a wholly owned subsidiary of BCE Inc., has recorded $79.2 million in consolidated revenue in the first quarter of 2003, ended March 31st, an increase of 2.6%.

Net earnings increased by $9.5 million to $22.1 million, compared to the first quarter of 2002. The earnings increase resulted from higher revenues and lower amortization and operating and other expenses which were partially offset by higher taxes.

Cash flow from operating activities was $49.6 million for the first quarter of 2003 compared to $44.9 million for the comparable period in 2002.

Highlights of the first quarter included:

New satellite: Telesat signed a contract with Astrium, Europe's largest space company, for a new satellite to replace Anik F1. Anik F1R will be launched in 2005, ensuring continuity of telecommunications, broadcasting and Internet services for its customers.

Launch provider selected: Through International Launch Services (ILS), Telesat arranged for the launch of the Anik F1R satellite on a Russian Proton M/Breeze M rocket.

Technology Showcase: Telesat signed a Research and Development Memorandum of Understanding with Storm Internet Services Inc. to build a joint satellite and terrestrial wireless technology infrastructure to showcase and test the viability of delivering high-speed Internet service to rural and remote areas using this combined technology.

Nimiq 2: Following an anomaly on Nimiq 2, Telesat restored affected traffic immediately with virtually no disruption of service to ExpressVu customers.

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