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Ovzon Delays Ovzon 3 Launch, Switches from Arianespace to SpaceX

By Mark Holmes | February 6, 2023

      Ovzon CEO Per Norén spoke with Via Satellite about how the Ovzon 3 satellite will “revolutionize” the company’s Satcom-as-a-Service offering. Photo: Ovzon

      SpaceX will now launch Ovzon’s highly anticipated Ovzon 3 satellite in a launch provider switch. Arianespace had been slated to launch the satellite. Ovzon announced Feb. 3 that manufacturer Maxar Technologies is delayed in finalizing the satellite, which led to the launch provider switch.

      Due to Maxar’s production delays, Ovzon engaged with Arianespace to find a new launch opportunity, which it said Arianespace “ultimately could not accommodate.” As, a result, Ovzon has now finalized an agreement with SpaceX to launch Ovzon 3. The satellite is likely to be launched between July and September this year.

      The delay of Ovzon 3 is expected to increase the total cost of the satellite project by approximately $25 million. The company said the delay will have no effect on its current business commitments.

      “While we are clearly disappointed in the continued delays in production of the satellite, we remain perfectly confident with the market demand of Ovzon 3, evidenced by the increasing demand from current and new customers around the world. The underlying capability and technology will be the catalyst for a paradigm shift in mobility, performance, and resiliency in delivering Ovzon’s Satcom-as-a-Service. We are working relentlessly with Maxar, SpaceX and other stakeholders to finalize the satellite and launch Ovzon 3 into orbit at first available opportunity,” Per Norén, CEO of Ovzon, said in a statement.

      Following the delay, Ovzon announced it  secured new financing to finalize and launch the satellite. It increased the current loan facility with P Capital Partners from $60 million to $65 million and through confirmed interest from several major shareholders, including Öresund, Bure, Handelsbanken Fonder, Fourth AP-fund and AFA Försäkring, to subscribe for SEK 200 million ($18.97 million) in an equity issue.

      Ovzon 3 has been delayed multiple times. The Swedish company ordered the satellite in 2019, and originally expected it to launch by the end of 2021. Launch was previously delayed because of the components, and Ovzon was previously targeting launch by the end of February.

      Maxar has dealt with delays for a number of its satellites, including its own WorldView Legion, and Jupiter 3 for Hughes Network Systems. Maxar recently told Hughes it will not deliver the satellite until the end of April 2023 because of subcontractor delays and challenging developmental work.  With the delays, Maxar agreed to waive more than $50 million in future fees and to purchase at least $30 million of goods and services from EchoStar in 2023.

      Maxar is now going through a deal to be acquired by private equity firm Advent International.