OneWeb backed by Bharti Airtel is a low-earth orbit (LEO) satellite communication company. It is co-owned by the Bharti group and the UK government. The company intends to compete against Project Kuiper from Amazon and Elon Musk’s Starlink that are its counterparts in the satellite broadband space.
Investment From Hanwha Systems
In a recent development, a South Korean Fortune 500 company Hanwha, which is a global technology and manufacturing company announced a $300 million equity investment in OneWeb. This investment takes the overall equity investment raised by OneWeb to $2.7 billion since November 2020 without debt issuance. The follows the additional funding of $550 million it raised from Bharti Global in June.
With this investment, Hanwha brings further defence capabilities alongside the latest antenna technologies to OneWeb. Besides these, the satellite communications company will benefit from relationships to new government customers and an expanded geographical reach as well.
The fundraising round will be completed in the first half of 2022 provided it is subject to regulatory approvals. When the round is complete, OneWeb will appoint a Board Director to represent Hanwha’s share in the satellite communications company.
Bharti Mittal, Founder and Chairman of Bharti Enterprises claimed Hanwha will enable OneWeb to access the highest-quality of technological thinking and development. He added they are a powerful partner in our global mission to connect the world.
Also, Youn Chul KIM President, Chief Executive Officer and Director at Hanwha Systems said that they are pleased to join hands with OneWeb, which has strength in the LEO communication area, the core of space business Also, Chul noted that Hanwha System’s satellite and antenna technology will bring more advantages to OneWeb ‘s vision to connect all the people across the globe.
What Holds For Future?
It is clear that leading global investors see a promising future for this ground-breaking company, OneWeb. Setting forward this trend, Hanwha brings advanced defence and antenna technology development to the OneWeb lineup.
Already, OneWeb’s first-generation fleet of 648 satellites are intended to provide global coverage in 2022 and this is fully funded. As of now, the company has launched 254 satellites into orbit and another satellite launch is pegged for this month from Baikonur, Kazakhstan. With these recent launches, OneWeb’s network will be ready to offer connectivity services from t50th parallel and above by the end of this year.