Bharti group-backed satellite service company OneWeb has secured $550 million in funding from Eutelsat Communications. This brings OneWeb’s total funding to $1.9 billion in fresh equity.
This investment from one of the world’s most experienced and largest global operators is a vote of confidence in OneWeb and underscores the arrival of Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites into mainstream long-term growth planning for major operators,” said a press statement.
Eutelsat will receive a 24 per cent equity stake in OneWeb joining leading investors, including the UK Government, Bharti Global and SoftBank. The investment is expected to be completed in the second half of 2021, subject to regulatory approvals.
After OneWeb completes the full deployment of the constellation, the company anticipates annual revenues of approximately $1 billion in year three or soon thereafter. Sunil Bharti Mittal, Founder and Chairman of Bharti Enterprises said: “We are delighted to welcome Eutelsat into the OneWeb family. As an open multi-national business, we are committed to serving the global needs of governments, businesses and communities across the world. Together we are stronger, benefiting from the entrepreneurial energy of Bharti, the extensive global outreach of the UK Government and the expertise in the satellite industry at Eutelsat. OneWeb, with its innovative and disruptive approach, is poised to take a leading position in LEO broadband connectivity.”
OneWeb’s mission is to deliver broadband connectivity worldwide to its customers, to bridge the global digital divide by offering data connectivity, facilitating linkage to the Internet of Things (IoT) future and a pathway to 5G.
On Monday, OneWeb successfully launched another 36 satellites into its constellation bringing the system to 182 satellites. The company has only two more launches left in its ‘Five to 50’ programme that will cement the company’s ability to start connectivity services to the United Kingdom, Alaska, Northern Europe, Greenland, Iceland, the Artic Seas and Canada, with global service available next year.