Inmarsat eyes up $35 million stake in satellite market
The company has teamed up with ACeS on a collaborative model that will bring handheld and fixed services to the rest of the world
The move is aimed at grabbing at least a 10 per cent share in what will be a $350 million market by 2010, according to mobile and satellite communications giant Inmarsat.
The partnership will initially result in service availability in Asia but will be extended to other geographies from next year, with the objective of making services fully global by 2009.
As part of the deal, Inmarsat will look after network and satellite operations in addition to development and service provision, while its new colleague will focus on product distribution.
To support its global ambitions, Inmarsat will launch a third Inmarsat-4 satellite. Currently in storage, the already-finished dish will cost up to $150 million to launch.
This figure is in addition to the $40 to $45 million the company will have to shoulder over a two-year period to ready the ACeS R190 satellite phone for it worldwide fanbase.
"Today Inmarsat takes its first steps in launching its global hand-held satellite phone service," said Andrew Sukawaty, chairman and chief executive of Inmarsat.
"Our move into hand-held means that distributors and end-customers choosing the new Inmarsat voice service will benefit from our long standing reputation for service reliability and quality. Furthermore, through our Inmarsat-4 satellite fleet, we will be the only provider today offering continuity of service on a global basis through the end of the next decade."
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