Home Economy Eutelsat and OneWeb may announce merger to compete with Starlink

Eutelsat and OneWeb may announce merger to compete with Starlink

French satellite operator Eutelsat and British company OneWeb may announce a merger in the coming days. This was reported on Sunday, July 24, on its website by the Financial Times newspaper.

According to the publication, the merger will help Eutelsat and OneWeb compete more effectively with the American SpaceX, which deploys a network of Starlink satellites in orbit, as well as with Amazon’s Project Kuiper satellite program.

It is noted that the deal could be reached as early as Monday, July 25, but both sides have not yet commented on a possible merger.

It is expected that representatives of the UK and France will become members of the board of directors of the combined company, while London will retain a controlling stake.

On March 21, it was reported that OneWeb entered into an agreement to launch its spacecraft with the American private company SpaceX.

As OneWeb CEO Neil Masterson noted, the company is grateful to SpaceX for the support that reflects their shared vision of the limitless potential of outer space.

On the same day, it was noted that the British company plans to resume the launch of satellites in 2022, which was suspended due to the refusal of Roscosmos to launch vehicles into orbit.

In early March, OneWeb announced that they were suspending the launches of their satellites from the Baikonur Cosmodrome. This decision was made against the background of US and European Union (EU) sanctions against the space industry of the Russian Federation, which were announced on February 24.

In response to the sanctions, Roskosmos announced on February 26 that they were suspending cooperation with Europe on launches from the Kourou cosmodrome in French Guiana and withdrawing Russian specialists from there.

OneWeb satellites are designed to create a space communication system that provides high-speed Internet access anywhere in the world. There are already more than a hundred such satellites in orbit, the first were launched into orbit in February 2019 from the Guiana Space Center (French Guiana).

By June 2022, the company intended to deploy a full constellation of satellites to provide global coverage. The founders of the project relied on Russia because of the technological superiority of Russian missiles.

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