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Speedcast and Intelsat sign new multi-year contract

Speedcast International has signed a new multi-year contract with Intelsat to leverage the reach and reliability of Intelsat’s global connectivity infrastructure service offerings.

The agreement marks a significant milestone for Speedcast as the company looks towards emergence from its chapter 11 proceeding and seeks to cement renewed relationships with key suppliers. It will provide increased capacity to assist customers with critical short-term requirements as the industry continues to adapt to the current environment. The agreement was approved by the U.S. courts overseeing the financial restructuring cases for both Speedcast and Intelsat.

“This new agreement will offer us the flexibility and global scale we need to best support our customers,” said Peter Shaper, chief executive officer at Speedcast.

“As we navigate the near-term headwinds stemming from the global Covid-19 pandemic and work toward finalising our recapitalisation process, it is critical that we find opportunities to reassess our overall bandwidth purchasing to better support our network, while also allowing us to help our customers through these unprecedented times. We look forward to expanding our use of the Intelsat network, and further transforming our business.”

Related items

  • Connectivity demand booms as leisure vessels become safer, reports IEC Telecom

    Demand for faster and cheaper connectivity at sea is set to increase as sailing is recognised as a safer place to work, travel and holiday during the COVID-19 pandemic says satcom specialist IEC Telecom, which is experiencing an increase in enquiries from vessel operators in the maritime leisure sector.

    With ‘lockdowns’ and restrictions easing in some parts of the world, yacht owners are now able to enjoy ‘social distancing’ onboard their vessels, which is leading to a boost in demand for high-speed connectivity and increased bandwidth capacity. With the focus on social distancing, yachts are becoming increasingly attractive remote offices for those able to attend to business matters while enjoying the open sea, sunshine and fresh air. During this challenging time, sailors have an increased need to stay connected for both personal and operational purposes as well as to avoid the need to go ashore as much as possible.

    The signs are pointing to an upsurge in leisure boating. Yacht chartering is seen as one of the safest ways to enjoy a break at present due to the minimal contact charterers have with other people. Yachts are considered to be more hygienic, given the ratio of crew to guests and the exclusivity of being on a private boat. Affluent consumers are looking for getaways with fewer crowds, more privacy and the ability to gather privately with those closest to them. The Boat Affair platform (whose rentals are available in more than 60 countries) has seen a 23 per cent increase in requests from customers who traditionally would opt for a hotel vacation or a seaside resort but are now seeking a safer alternative. And, according to a new survey by LuggageHero, 25 per cent of travellers report they will try to avoid crowded commercial flights and public transportation in a post-coronavirus world.

    Meanwhile, in countries where travel is still restricted, many larger leisure boats and super yachts remain fully crewed and operational – also leading to increased need for connectivity as crews try to stay in touch with family and friends while conducting as many ship operations as possible via remote techniques. With crew restricted to remaining on the vessel in many places, higher speeds and larger bandwidth capacity is needed to provide leisure activities too.

    The leisure boat sector was initially hit hard by international lockdowns and is now incurring additional costs for deep cleaning, personal protective equipment, virus testing etc which are not generally reflected in the charter fees. As a result, systems which allow to optimise bandwidth consumption in order to reduce expenses on communication are proving popular with consumers looking to install or upgrade yacht connectivity systems.

    Gwenael Loheac, chief executive officer Western & Southern Europe for IEC Telecom said: “Data traffic on leisure vessels has increased during this crisis period because crew, vessel operators and passengers need to exchange information on a more regular basis. In response to COVID-19, we are seeing increased demand for flexible tariffs to enable leisure vessel operators to adapt quickly to fluctuating connectivity requirements. Fortunately, we are well-placed to meet these needs, having a wide portfolio of solutions designed to provide best user experience, while keeping communications costs at bay.

    IEC Telecom recently launched OneGate Marine Compact, a new lightweight digital solution with a network management system which provides full visibility over on-board network assets (both satellite and GSM) and enables vessel owners to control expenses and optimise consumption via a digital dashboard.

    Mr Loheac commented: “OneGate Marine Compact was developed to cater to all major requirements of the leisure boat sector – addressing their needs for speed, bandwidth and cost optimisation. OneGate Marine Compact is an agile, lightweight, highly-adaptable and easy-to-install digital communications system which gives complete access to the benefits of digital connectivity even on smaller vessels. At this challenging time this system is providing many of the answers yacht owners need to enable them to conduct online business and leisure activities safely and securely.”

  • Pacific Basin supports crew with KVH YOURLink service

    Shipowner and operator Pacific Basin is using KVH Industries’ VSAT connectivity services to support its crew and ensure operational efficiency during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Hartmann seals connectivity upgrade deal with Marlink

    German Hartmann Shipping Services has signed a major new service upgrade agreement with Marlink that will see Hartmann move from an allowance-based VSAT connectivity to an unlimited Committed Information Rate (CIR) service.

  • Telenor performs in-orbit satellite servicing

    Telenor Satellite in partnership with Intelsat have become the first commercial satellite operators to perform in-orbit servicing of an active satellite in geosynchronous orbit.

  • Speedcast receives $395M to support reorganisation plan

    Speedcast has received a US$395 million equity commitment from Centerbridge Partners, L.P. and its affiliates to support a plan of reorganisation, which has the support of both Centerbridge and the Company’s Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors.

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