France: Data distributors and services providers have established themselves as a key component of the EO value-chain and an important partner of the EO satellite operators in order to disseminate data to the largest number of end-users possible. This is particularly apparent in accessing key fast growing regional markets and being able to do business with government and private end-users locally. According to Euroconsult's new research report, Earth Observation: Data Distribution, an estimated 12-17% of the $1.5 billion (Euroconsult: Satellite-based Earth Observation, Market Prospects, 6th edition)commercial data market flows through the distributors. It is considered that all major vertical market sectors are procuring from the data distributors to varying degrees.
"While this percentage may seem low, it should be recalled that the majority of the total market is to defence end-users [65%] who prefer a more direct approach to receive imagery, such as through direct receiving stations. Business for the data distributor reflects this, with a far greater emphasis on enterprise markets," said Philippe Campenon, Deputy Director, Space and Earth Observation at Euroconsult.
The report also mentioned that revenue through data services from the distributors is first from civil governments, totalling 47% of distributor data business. This highlights the need to be local in accessing civil contracts, an important consideration given the growing demand globally for EO solutions. Data provision to the private sector through distribution is also disproportionally higher than the total data market, representing 37% of the distributors business.
Euroconsult stated that the relatively small figure of 16% data revenues associated to defence users demonstrates the more direct approach preferred by this user community. Most operating companies with very high resolution satellites offer direct receiving stations solutions to defence end-users in order to meet their requirements of secure, continuous data supply with degrees of autonomy in satellite tasking and data acquisition, and short delivery time.
The report notes that more than 550 active data distribution agreements have been signed globally with local companies. Euroconsult claims that the data was compiled after conducting interviews with 15 data distributors with a mean presence in the sector of 19 years. Companies ranged from data distribution being their primary business to organizations active in other parts of the EO value-chain.