June 8, 2023


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KSAT Space Company With ‘Heavenly’ Profits – But Struggles To Find Enough Qualified Personnel – E24

The space company KSAT is approaching one and a half billion kroner and will employ 120 people within two years to meet the growth.

Record growth: CEO Rolf Skatteboe of Kongsberg Satellite Service can look back on 2022 very well. The company is now approaching NOK 1.5 billion in turnover.
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We simply have a product that is in very high demand. This is the main reason why we have grown so strongly, says Managing Director Rolf Schatebo.

From the edge of Prestvannet at the top of Tromsøya runs a global giant in satellite services.

will employ 60

Kongsberg Satellite Service – or KSAT – is a world leader in receiving and processing satellite data from the Northern Hemisphere.

The company has 300 employees in Tromsø, 45 in Svalbard, 20 in Oslo and the subsidiary in the United States, respectively. Last year, 60 people were employed, and in 2023 the number of employees will be increased by 60 people – mainly in Tromsø.

We struggled a bit with hiring certain types of employees. For example, there is a small shortage of developers, but there are more and more people who want to work with us – here they can simply help make great things, says the manager.

In recent years, the turnover has increased sharply, and the year 2022 is tentative high all the time for KSAT.

– We are very happy with 2022. We are over budget. For 2023 the numbers are also very positive, we are meeting the budget targets we set for ourselves, says Skatteboe.

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The 2023 budget anticipates continued upward growth.

Very satisfied: – We have delivered on budget and above in 2022. We are also on budget in 2023, he says.

According to Skatteboe, the war in Ukraine and turmoil in the rest of the world had little effect on KSAT’s operations.

– We note that the prices of goods and services have risen, but for us it is not of great importance. He adds that there is increasing pressure on operating margins, but it’s not particularly significant.

antennas on all continents

Skatteboe says that pure volume growth is the reason for the increase in turnover in 2022. There are more satellites in orbit around the world, and more customers who want to receive processed data from them.

– We have 250 receiving antennas all over the world – in fact on all continents including Antarctica. We expanded our antenna network by 40 antennas last year, and we plan to build 40 new antennas this year, he says.

The main characters

2022 2021
operating income 1.47 billion Norwegian kroner 1.23 billion Norwegian crowns
Operating expenses 1.09 billion Norwegian kroner 895 million NOK
operating profit 383 million NOK 338 million kilometres
Annual result after taxes and financing NOK 321 million NOK 274 million

In pure operating income – that is, what the company paid for its services – the company managed to include NOK 1.43 billion. This is a strong increase from last year, when the company managed to record – at the time – a record sales figure of NOK 1.2 billion.

That is an increase of NOK 230 million.

Now it is not only the income that has increased, but the costs have also increased significantly – but not by the same amount.

Net operating costs ended at NOK 1.08 billion – up just over NOK 210 million.

The difference between operating income and costs was NOK 359 million in 2022 and NOK 327 million in 2021, respectively.

High operating margin

The operating margin in 2022 was a whopping 25 percent.

KSAT has positive financial income – i.e. dividends and interest are higher than costs associated with loans, etc. After adding net financial and tax costs to the operating result, the final annual result is NOK 302 million. This represents an increase of about NOK 28 million compared to the previous year.

Of the annual output, NOK 40 million will be distributed to the owners in the form of dividends, while the remaining NOK 262 million will be accumulated as equity. After the conversion, KSAT will have NOK 1.4 billion in net equity. According to Skatteboe, there is a special reason for this.

High-flying plans: KSAT will invest between NOK 300 and 400 million in antennas targeting lunar satellites.

aim at the moon

KSAT aspires high in the coming years. very loud.

– We plan to spend NOK 300-400 million on an antenna system that can receive signals from satellites orbiting the Moon. The board decided to raise capital so that we would be flexible enough to be able to make such an investment, Skatteboe says.