Tawazun and Yahsat launch Star Technologies to develop and manufacture satellite communications technology

  • The initiative combines UAE talent and international expertise to create a self-sustaining in-country satellite communications (satcom) economy
  • The joint venture will contribute to the UAE’s economic diversification program through innovation and R&D, inspiring future generations to work in technology and the space and satcom sector

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, 16 November 2021: Tawazun Economic Council (“Tawazun”) and Al Yah Satellite Communications Company PJSC (“Yahsat” and, together with its subsidiaries, “the Group”) the UAE’s flagship satellite solutions provider, listed on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (“ADX”) under (SYMBOL: YAHSAT) (ISIN: AEA007501017), today announced the signing of an agreement for the incorporation of their proposed joint venture, under the brand name of Star Technologies, at Dubai Airshow.

Star Technologies will develop best-in-class satcom capabilities, building upon the strong value proposition already offered to the UAE government by Yahsat Government Solutions, the dedicated government solutions arm of Yahsat, creating an opportunity for even greater differentiation and customer excellence in the market.  

The long-term mission of Star Technologies is to create value for end-users through a combination of R&D and acquisition and generation of new intellectual property, forming the core of a self-sustaining satcom industry in the UAE. Star Technologies will specialize in the engineering, design and in-country manufacturing of customized hardware and software, including advanced satellite modems, small form factor antennas, and tracking solutions. Star Technologies’ mandate is fully aligned with the UAE government’s economic diversification program, with the goal of creating UAE-made intellectual property while inspiring future generations to enter the space technology industry. 

The first product will be a Star Technologies branded IP satellite modem system. This system will complement Yahsat’s existing satcom capabilities to enable differentiated high-performance solutions and establish an integrated end-to-end commercial offering for multiple end-user segments. 

Star Technologies will be led by General Manager Khalid Al Awadhi, a long-standing senior executive in the UAE space industry.  Mr. Al Awadhi previously served as the Executive Vice President, Special Projects, Yahsat Government Solutions and the Director of Space Missions for the UAE Space Agency, where he led complex scientific and exploratory space missions to advance the UAE’s national space program.

“This joint venture is bound to have an impact, as innovation is in Tawazun and Yahsat’s DNA. This venture is a product of Tawazun’s role to create efficient, resilient, connected and sustainable technologies that reflect the UAE’s strategic goals, especially for the 4th Industrial revolution,” said H.E. Tareq Abdulrahman Al Hosani, CEO of Tawazun. 

“We welcome the prospect to leverage opportunities for local industry and continue evolving the UAE’s satcom capabilities through further development of the country’s manufacturing sector,” he added.

Speaking on the launch of Star Technologies, Ali Al Hashemi, Group Chief Executive Officer at Yahsat, said, “We are proud to announce the launch of Star Technologies at the Dubai Air Show. This announcement is result of significant efforts from both entities and brings us one step closer to advancing the UAE’s satellite communications manufacturing capabilities. Today’s milestone, jointly achieved with our partners at Tawazun Economic Council, complements our commitment to position the UAE as a global hub for space science and technology, while developing talent in the satellite communications sector and inspiring future generations to enter this fast-growing and fascinating industry.” 

Khalid Al Awadhi, General Manager, Star Technologies, said, “I am honoured to take on this new leadership role at Star Technologies, an organisation that will lead from the front to drive innovation in the UAE, in collaboration with leading international technology firms. I am confident that Star Technologies, with the backing of Yahsat’s extensive network, reach and long-standing government relationships, will be pivotal in cementing the UAE as a leader in satellite-enabled communication technologies”. 

Today’s announcement follows the MoU that was signed between Yahsat and Tawazun Economic Council in February 2021. The incorporation of Star Technologies remains subject to the fulfilment of certain conditions precedent and is expected to take place no later than Q1 2022. 

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