(April 29, 2019 – New York City) – Space & Satellite Professionals International (SSPI) announced today that Thomas Van den Driessche, Chief Executive Officer of Newtec, has been appointed President of the Board of Directors by vote of its members. With hundreds of thousands of people working in member companies, the organization represents a USD 400 Billion market in 2018.

Mr. Van den Driessche will work closely with Board Chairman David Myers, President of the Communications Sector for Peraton, to continue the growth of SSPI’s membership beyond traditional GEO communications into LEO, MEO, earth observation, optical communications and into a new era of the space economy, with a more global footprint. Other current board members represent Arianespace, Blue Origin, Boeing, CBS, Ericsson, Eutelsat, Globalstar, Hughes Network Systems, Kymeta, OneWeb, Planet, SES, SpaceX, Speedcast, SSL, the Spaceconnection, Viacom and Viasat.

“SSPI represents the business of space; the commercial space industry that, every day, takes bold risks in launching capital-intensive missions to create a big return,” said Mr. Van den Driessche. “Not because it is easy to do, but because it is hard and disruptive.  The ambitious visions of SSPI’s member companies are creating a new future for humanity.  Planet-wide wireless solutions that connect every single inch of our world.  Mapping and understanding all of earth’s surface and atmosphere, to make humanity’s footprint on earth as efficient as it can be.  Building the commercial space economy that will ultimately employ a million people in space.  Every day, they are making a better world from outside the atmosphere.” 

The ambitious state of the industry was reflected by USD 7 Billion new capital injections in 2018 and is forecast to grow to a USD 1.1 Trillion industry in the next 20 years.

Thomas Van den Driessche has been active in the broadcast and satellite markets for the past 20 years. He has spent 12 of those with Newtec, where he started as director of sales and business development. At the end of 2016, he was made CEO.

About Newtec
Newtec specializes in designing, developing and manufacturing equipment and technologies for satellite communications. Headquartered in Belgium, it operates commercial offices in the Middle East, Asia, South America and the USA and employs more than 400 team members worldwide. 

As a pioneer in the industry, Newtec is dedicated to creating new possibilities for the broadcast, consumer and enterprise VSAT, government and defense, cellular backhaul and trunking and mobility, offshore and maritime markets.  Its products and technologies can be applied in a wide range of single and multiservice applications from DTH broadcasting, video contribution and distribution and disaster recovery and backbones for cellular backhauling, to small and medium enterprises, SCADA and oil and gas networks, aircrafts and vessels.

About SSPI
Founded in 1983, Space & Satellite Professionals International (www.sspi.org) represents the commercial space industry in its ambitious quest to build a better world from beyond Earth’s atmosphere.  Its individual and corporate members form the largest network in the industry.  With their support, SSPI educates future customers, government policymakers and future employees on the enormous contributions that commercial space makes to life on Earth today and to a future space economy.  To power innovation, SSPI provides career education to attract young talent into commercial space, management education for companies and talent recognition that spans the industry. 

Victoria Krisman
Communications Associate
Space & Satellite Professionals International