Marlink wins 5 year Aida contract

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Marlink, the world’s largest maritime satellite communications integrator has announced a new five year contract with German cruise company AIDA Cruises, for the supply of its Sealink(T) satellite communications system. Sealink(T) will be provided to five existing cruise vessels and three planned new builds, the first of which will be in operation from spring 2009 with the others in commission in 2010 and 2011.

The new contract is a continuation of an existing relationship which has been highly successful in the delivery of Marlink’s service to the AIDA Cruises. Marlink will provide VSAT bandwidth capacity to facilitate both business critical applications for the cruise line as well as the provision of passenger services.

Burkhard Mueller of AIDA Cruises, said: “We pride ourselves in providing our ships with the very best services for both passengers and crew, so it is essential that the supply of communication systems matches the standards we demand. Marlink has shown it has the professionalism we require and provides a technically advanced system which is a market leader. It was therefore a logic decision to extend our contract with Marlink for a further five years.”

Sealink(T) is a full service broadband satellite solution developed by Marlink which offers “always-on” voice, Internet access and Local Area Network (LAN) communications. The system is ideal for cruise line services and is currently used by a number of the leading maritime businesses, including commercial shipping companies. The service provides a top-quality broadband communications network, with a fully managed turn-key service for business-essential communications at sea.

AIDA vessels are dedicated to the German-speaking market and renowned as a seagoing “club resort”. AIDA ships incorporate the successful elements of premium and four-star clubs and resorts, with a host of on-board amenities, services for communications and voice are therefore highly valued in this market.

Operating in the Mediterranean, Northern Europe, Caribbean and Asia regions the AIDA vessels will be equipped with Sealink(T) C-band services state-of-the-art VSAT technology – each with technical solutions providing bandwidths from 384 kbps to 768 kbps with dedicated SCPC. The cruise line also has the option to move to shared solutions from Marlink by 1st of May 2009. The options are based on either Vipersat multicast SCPC or IDirect technology, subject to final testing and requirements.