The former PanAmSat Corporation founded in 1984 by Reynold (Rene) Anselmo, was a satellite service provider headquartered in Wilton, Connecticut. It operated a fleet of communications satellites used by the entertainment industry, news agencies, internet service providers, government agencies, and telecommunication companies.
PanAmSat effectively broke the monopoly on international satellite communications which was held by Intelsat, an international treaty-based organization founded and owned by several countries including the United States. PanAmSat, led by Anselmo, successfully lobbied the United States Congress to permit it to operate globally, competing against Intelsat. PanAmSat (and Anselmo) became famous for full-page advertisements in the Wall Street Journal depicting Spot, the PanAmSat mascot, urinating on politicians' legs. The company's motto was "Truth and Technology Will Triumph Over Bullshit and Bureaucracy."
Following the death of Rene Anselmo in 1995, his widow Mary Anselmo controlled the company for a time. PanAmSat was sold to Hughes Electronics, a division of General Motors, in a $3 billion cash and stock deal. The satellite operations continued to be under PanAmSat with Hughes being the majority shareholder. In May 1997, Hughes Communication Galaxy merged with PanAmSat, adding 9 more satellites to its fleet. In 2003, News Corporation purchased Hughes Electronic's PanAmSat division and on April 24, 2004 sold PanAmSat to a consortium of private equity firms in an leveraged buyout including Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. (KKR), Carlyle Group and Providence Equity Partners for $4.3 billion.
In an ironic twist of fate, its private equity owners sold PanAmSat to its arch rival Intelsat in August 2005 for a total of $4.3 billion in a deal finally consummated in July 2006. At the time of its sale, PanAmSat was the world's leading carrier of TV channels. In combination with Intelsat (which had also gone private under private equity ownership in 2000), the new company — called Intelsat — is the world's largest commercial satellite company, with 53 spacecraft serving over 200 countries, with nearly 1400 employees. Global headquarters for the company is Washington, D.C. under the leadership of CEO David McGlade.
In March 2007, Forbes magazine estimated the net worth of Rene Anselmo's widow, Mary Anselmo at $1 billion. Anselmo, 78, lives in Greenwich, Connecticut.
PanAmSat petitions FCC to lift telephone PSN restrictions. (seeks modification of restrictions prohibiting satellite systems from carrying traffic connected with the public switched network)
Jul 30, 1990; PanAmSat PETITIONS FCC TO LIFT TELEPHONE PSN RESTRICTIONS PanAmSat has petitioned the FCC to modify restrictions...
PanAmSat: a huge hit for Hughes: by merging with PanAmSat, Hughes picks up a savvy satellite operator.(includes related article on DirecTV)(Special Report: Domestic Satelites)
Jan 26, 1998; Later this year, Hughes Space & Communications Co. will be on the front page. For the first time, a giant commercial satellite...