LONDON, July 3, 2020 — Satellite communications company OneWeb has entered into an agreement with a consortium led by HMG (through the UK Secretary of State for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy) and India based Bharti Global Limited for the acquisition of the OneWeb business.
A consortium of Her Majesty’s Government (HMG) (through the UK Secretary of State for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy) and Bharti Global Limited has committed to providing more than USD $1 billion funds to restart of its business operations.
OneWeb will look to resume operations as soon as possible and continue with progress towards providing global high-speed, low latency connectivity via its state-of-the-art satellite constellation.
Following a competitive process, the consortium’s winning bid will enable OneWeb to continue its progress towards commercial operations and secure OneWeb’s position as a global leader in low latency connectivity.
Bharti, through Bharti Airtel, is the third-largest mobile operator in the world, with over 425 million customers.
Bharti Airtel has its own extensive mobile broadband networks and enterprise business, which will act as the testing ground for all OneWeb products, services, and applications.
Bharti will contribute significant contract value to OneWeb through its presence across South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, where the terrain necessitates the use of satellite-based connectivity, providing a near-term anchor customer for large-scale global deployment of OneWeb’s services.
The commitment of HMG accelerates and enhances OneWeb’s global access. OneWeb will contribute to the UK government’s ambition to join the first rank of space nations, along with its commitment to making the UK the world’s leader in science and research and development.
OneWeb remains ready to continue building its communications system to deliver transformative connectivity available everywhere including to businesses and people in remote and rural parts of the world, starting with the Arctic, while also maintaining a strong corporate purpose to do good through its communications and other services.
Adrian Steckel, CEO of OneWeb commented: “The combination of HMG and Bharti will bring immediate value as we develop as a global leader in low latency connectivity. This successful outcome for OneWeb underscores the confidence in our business, technology, and the work of our entire team. With differentiated and flexible technology, unique spectrum assets, and a compelling market opportunity ahead of us, we are eager to conclude the process and get back to launching our satellites as soon as possible.”
The transaction remains subject to approval by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, as well as regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.