Contact: William N. Ostrove, Aerospace Systems Analyst
Phone: (203) 426-0800
Fax: (203) 426-4262
Web site: www.forecastinternational.com
Forecast International, Inc.
22 Commerce Rd. Newtown, CT 06470 USA
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Despite Challenges, Launch Vehicle Production Remains Strong
NEWTOWN, Conn. [October 21, 2011] — Forecast International projects that the worldwide expendable launch vehicle market will be worth $53 billion from 2011-2020, based on production of 693 launch vehicles. A total of 29 launch vehicle programs are covered in the company's "The Market for Expendable Launch Vehicles” analysis, which notes that in a market that faces challenges over the next 10 years, there are bright spots.
"Several trends have emerged in recent years that have placed launch providers on more solid footing," said William Ostrove, aerospace systems analyst and author of the report. "However, challenges will remain during the study's forecast period."
According to the study, the launch industry is in the process of recovering from a market downturn, brought on by an overabundance of supply that depressed prices and made it difficult for providers to turn a profit. But in recent years that has changed. "After years of poor market conditions in which many players were unable to compete, the commercial industry is now dominated by two companies – International Launch Services and Arianespace," said Ostrove. "The situation has also allowed these remaining launch operators to increase prices to better cover costs."
The analysis discusses a significant trend in the industry, that of increased reliance on government contracts. Ostrove points out that "the lack of commercial customers has forced launch operator United Launch Alliance (ULA) to focus almost solely on government contracts. Indian, Chinese, Japanese, and many Russian launch vehicle operators have followed suit."
Also addressed are several obstacles that face the market, including the increased competition that will challenge the established players, and dwindling demand. For example, Sea Launch will provide additional competition. The company emerged from bankruptcy and plans to restart operations by the end of 2011. New companies such as Space Exploration Technologies Corp (SpaceX) are also threatening the status quo by offering launch services at drastically lower prices than any of their competitors.
While competition is increasing, demand for launch services could drop in the future. Many commercial satellite operators will reach the end of their capital expenditure programs in the next few years. During that period, the reduced demand for satellites will lessen the need for launch services.
Despite the increased competition and fluctuating demand, launch vehicle production will remain strong overall during the coming 10 years to satisfy the need to carry government and commercial payloads into orbit. Between 2011 and 2020, EADS Astrium, which builds the Ariane 5, will top Forecast International's list of prominent manufacturers. Other major players will include ULA, a joint venture between Boeing and Lockheed Martin that produces and markets the Atlas V and Delta IV launch vehicles; Soyuz spacecraft manufacturer TsSKB Progress; Khrunichev, maker of the Proton; and China Great Wall Industries, manufacturer of the Long March family of launch vehicles.
Forecast International, Inc. (www.forecastinternational.com) is a leading provider of Market Intelligence and Analysis in the areas of aerospace, defense, power systems and military electronics. Based in Newtown, Conn., USA, Forecast International specializes in long-range industry forecasts and market assessments used by strategic planners, marketing professionals, military organizations, and governments worldwide. To arrange an interview with Forecast International’s editors, please contact Ray Peterson, Vice President, Research & Editorial Services (203) 426-0800, firstname.lastname@example.org. Questions regarding sales may be directed to email@example.com.