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Isro appoints V S Hegde as Antrix chairman, MD

The Indian Space research Organisation (Isro) has appointed V S Hegde as the full time chairman and managing director of its marketing wing, Antrix Corporation, in a bid to boost its commercialisation drive.

V S Hegde Hegde was Isro’s scientific secretary since January 2010. He was also involved in earth observation satellite (EOS) programmes in his earlier assignments.

V Koteswara Rao has been appointed the scientific secretary of Isro, while H N Madhusudana was appointed the associate scientific secretary.

“This restructuring would ensure the right kind of sharing and allocation of resources for Antrix. We hope the commercial wing would scale new heights under the present leadership,” said Isro Chairman K Radhakrishnan.

Antrix, which was established in 1992, has a mandate to promote and exploit the commercial prospects of space products. It is also engaged in technical consultancy services, along with the transfer of technologies from Isro to various user groups.

“We will look at venturing into a value-creation role from the current value-transfer role of our commercial wing. That would be beneficial for non-space applications,” Radhakrishnan said.

Under the current managerial arrangement, the board will comprise Isro scientists and academic experts, along with people from the industry who would chalk out the strategic moves for Antrix. Along with the board, there would also be a coordination management committee, comprising a few senior Isro directors the chairman and managing director of Antrix. The committee would determine the future direction for this wing.

“While the global space market is pegged at $160 billion, Antrix’s current share is just $200 million. So, there is tremendous scope for us to leverage Isro’s capabilities in the near future,” said V S Hegde.

Hegde, who is also the founder-director of Karnataka Space Remote Sensing Centre and vice-president of International Astronautical Federation, said, “There is huge demand for transponders from various countries and currently, we are not able to cater to the demand. So ,we will ensure that Antrix is able to provide enough transponders on lease in the coming years.”

Antrix had reported revenue of around Rs 1,025 crore in 2010-11, 16 per cent higher over the same period last year. The bulk of its business comes from leasing out transponders, and this contributes around 70 per cent of the total turnover. The remaining is accounted for by satellite services, including satellite launches.