Arianespace aims to break even in 2001 despite posting its first loss in two decades for the financial year just ended.

The European space launch company recorded sales of $995 million, 13.5% up on 1999, but took a loss of $209 million. The deficit is attributed mainly to investment in infrastructure at the Kourou launch site in French Guiana. This includes a new satellite preparation building that can process eight satellites simultaneously.

Meanwhile, Arianespace expects this week to confirm a number of new launch contracts that could take the European company's market share to over 50% of the market.

Source: Flight Daily News