DULLES, Va., May 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Orbital Sciences Corporation (NYSE: ORB) held its 2001 Annual Meeting of Stockholders today at the company's headquarters in Dulles, Virginia at which five members of the Board of Directors were elected to three-year terms. During the meeting, Mr. David W. Thompson, Orbital's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, gave a presentation in which he recapped the company's strategic, operational and financial performance in 2000 and provided a similar overview of the company's plans for 2001.

The five members of Orbital's Board of Directors elected to new three-year terms were Mr. Fred C. Alcorn, Dr. Lennard A. Fisk, Dr. Jack L. Kerrebrock, Mr. Garrett E. Pierce and Mr. David W. Thompson.

Mr. Thompson's presentation addressed 2000 operating and financial results as well as a review of the company's new corporate strategy, which involves refocusing on its core space technology businesses and improving its balance sheet.

2000 Results Overview

Strategic Developments:

Orbital accomplished a number of important actions in 2000 as part of the company's revised strategic approach to refocus on and improve the performance of its core businesses, to divest non-core assets and to improve its balance sheet and overall liquidity, Mr. Thompson stated. Among the strategic actions taken in 2000 were the sale of the company's Fairchild Defense unit, the initial public offering of shares in its MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. (MDA) subsidiary and the curtailment of additional capital investments in Orbital's satellite services affiliates.

Operational Performance:

Mr. Thompson noted the company's continued strong operational performance in 2000, with 12 successful space missions completed during last year together with another 10 successes so far in 2001. He also highlighted Orbital's industry-best record of 103 consecutive successful space missions -- satellite deployments, rocket launches and space payload operations -- during the 52- month period from January 1997 through April 2001.

Financial Results:

Mr. Thompson acknowledged that 2000 was a difficult and disappointing period for the company in terms of its financial results and the performance of its stock price. He said that Orbital is taking aggressive actions to position the company to reduce debt, improve cash reserves and improve the cost efficiency and profitability of its core space technology manufacturing units.

2001 Performance Outlook

In outlining Orbital's strategic, operational and financial goals for 2001, Mr. Thompson stated that the company's number one priority is increase the share value of Orbital's stock. To accomplish this paramount goal, Mr. Thompson laid out the company's general performance targets for 2001.

Strategic Goals:

Mr. Thompson stated that Orbital will continue to implement its "back-to- basics" strategy, with primary emphasis placed on the company's core satellite, launch vehicle, space sensors and electronics businesses. Within these core business units, Orbital's two main goals for the year ahead were discussed:

  • To maintain its strong competitive position and market share in its traditional space technology products, and

  • To secure new business in several areas of potentially strong growth for the company, including small geostationary communications satellites, missile defense systems and advanced space operations programs.

With regard to its major satellite services affiliates, ORBCOMM and ORBIMAGE, Orbital's goals in 2001 are as follows:

  • To support the completion of a new business plan and financial structure for ORBCOMM, including a substantial ownership position by Orbital, that will enable the satellite data communications company to achieve long- term success, and

  • To assist the company's ORBIMAGE affiliate to carry out the launch of OrbView-4, its first high-resolution imaging satellite, and to implement its business plan over the coming year.

Operational Goals:

Orbital is targeting to complete up to 20 space missions in 2001 with a continued 100% success rate, said Mr. Thompson. Over the next several months, Orbital has eight important missions on its operational calendar, including the following important near-term events:

  • Launches of NASA's Hyper-X hypersonic research aircraft and a scientific satellite aboard the company's Pegasus launch vehicles,

  • Delivery and launch of the BSAT-2b geostationary communications satellite aboard an Ariane rocket, and

  • Delivery and launch of the OrbView-4 high-resolution imaging satellite for ORBIMAGE and the QuikTOMS satellite for NASA, both of which will be launched aboard the company's Taurus rocket.

Financial Targets:

Mr. Thompson stated that Orbital's financial objectives for 2000 include:

  • Reducing total debt by at least $100 million and improving overall liquidity and financial flexibility, and

  • Improving operating profitability and cash flow in its core business units in the year ahead as a key part of the company's strategic refocusing.

Orbital is one of the world's leading manufacturers of low-cost space systems, including satellites, launch vehicles, space sensors and satellite ground systems. Orbital is also involved with satellite-based networks that provide data communications, high-resolution imagery and automotive information services to customers around the world. More information about Orbital can be found at http://www.orbital.com .

Note: "Safe Harbor" Statement Under the Private Securities Litigation
Reform Act of 1995.

All statements other than those of historical facts included in this document, including those related to the company's financial outlook, liquidity, goals, targets, business strategy, projected plans and objectives of management for future operating results, are forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements are and will be based on management's then- current views and assumptions regarding future events and operating performance. Such "forward-looking statements" involve unknown risks and uncertainties that may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the company to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. These and other factors are more fully described in "Business Considerations" contained in the company's Form 10-K.

CONTACT: Media: Barron Beneski, 703-406-5528, or email:
beneski.barron@orbital.com; or Investors: Timothy Perrott, 703-406-5997, or
email: perrott.tim@orbital.com; both of Orbital Sciences Corporation.
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SOURCE Orbital Sciences Corporation

CONTACT: Media: Barron Beneski, 703-406-5528, or email: beneski.barron@orbital.com; or Investors: Timothy Perrott, 703-406-5997, or email: perrott.tim@orbital.com; both of Orbital Sciences Corporation/