Gilat CEO Expects Ka-band Revenue Growth in 2013

[Satellite TODAY Insider 08-20-12] Gilat’s Ka-band initiatives are well underway and the Israeli satellite company’s related project pipeline is growing at a healthy rate, according to Gilat CEO Erez Antebi.

   “Our [Ka-band] initiatives are starting to take form and we expect to see Ka-band revenue growth from 2013 onwards,” Antebi told investors during an Aug. 17 conference call. “In preparation for the planned Ka-band satellite launches in the second half of this year and beyond, we continue to make great strides technologically with our VSAT equipment. The SkyEdge 2-c Aries VSAT is our newly developed Ka-band consumer terminal, which will be used to support SES broadband satellite-based Internet service as well as other Ka-band satellite services upon deployment.”
   Antebi added that his company received considerable market interest in Ka-band applications in addition to consumer markets, such as IP tracking and satellite-on-the-move connectivity. “With our highly advanced communications equipment and versatile technology enabling multiple applications, coupled with our flexibility in meeting both technical and business requirements and our strong pipeline, we believer we are well positioned to take advantage of the Ka-band satellite growth going forward,” he said.
   The conference call was accompanied by Gilat’s 2012 second-quarter financial results that showed a modest increase in quarterly revenues from 81.7 million during the same period last year to $85.3 million. Gilat said the increase was primarily due to a strong quarter for its commercial division that was driven by a higher level of revenues from its work on the NBN project in Australia.
   Gilat signed and an agreement with Australian operator Optus Networks to provide hubs, VSATs, site installation and network operation for the NBN Co. Antebi highlighted his company’s recent deployment of the first 10,000 VSATs ordered as part of the contract.
   “The [NBN] project is moving forward, ahead of schedule as increased demand is driving a faster than expected network rollout,” Antebi said on the call. “As such, while the initial commitment was for a network of 20,000 VSATs, the network may grow to as much as 48,000 sites by late 2015. Our customer is very satisfied with the implementations and support it has received to date.”

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