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Eutelsat Increases Stake in OneWeb, Announces Globacom Deal

By Mark Holmes | October 6, 2021
Eutelsat's headquarters in Paris. Photo: Eutelsat

Eutelsat’s headquarters in Paris. Photo: Eutelsat

Eutelsat now has a close to 23% stake in OneWeb. The company announced Oct. 6 that it is spending another $165 million to increase its stake in OneWeb from 17.6% to 22.9%. Eutelsat will now be the second-largest shareholder behind Bharti Global, which holds 30%, strengthening its position as a key shareholder and partner of OneWeb.

Geostationary Orbit (GEO) operator Eutelsat first invested $550 million in the Low-Earth Orbit (LEO) constellation in April 2021, with the intent to explore GEO/LEO integrations.

“We are hugely excited to grasp this opportunity to deepen our commitment to OneWeb. The significant progress it has made in the run-up to its now imminent entry into service, together with the vote of confidence demonstrated by the commitment of both its investors and future customers, makes us even more convinced of OneWeb’s right-to-win in the LEO constellation segment,” Rodolphe Belmer, Eutelsat’s CEO said in a statement.

In separate news, Eutelsat has also signed a new capacity deal with Globacom, a major telco in Africa. Globacom, trading under the name Glo, signed a multi-year, multi-Gbps wholesale capacity contract to extend its coverage beyond the reach of its terrestrial infrastructure, leveraging the Eutelsat Konnect satellite. The deal was announced Oct. 5 and signed in the presence of French President, Emmanuel Macron at the Elysée Palace in Paris.

We are delighted to add satellite services to our portfolio, leveraging the state-of-the art Eutelsat Konnect satellite to extend connectivity to even far-flung areas in Nigeria, in line with our mission to build Africa’s biggest and best telecommunications network. The infrastructure will complement our Glo 1 submarine cable and extensive fiber optic layout across the country,” Dr. Mike Adenuga Jr., chairman of Globacom said in a statement.