Briefing

Ottawa-based Telesat reportedly hopes to best U.K. government for OneWeb stake

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The London-headquartered space-technology company (it also has a headquarters in Virginia) will be the subject of a bankruptcy court auction on Thursday. The British state is reportedly bidding US$500 million for a 20 per cent stake, in a consortium with existing investor Bharti Enterprises, which operates Indian wireless carrier Airtel. (The Telegraph)

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Talking point: Both Telesat and OneWeb are planning constellations of low-Earth orbit (LEO) satellites to deliver high-speed internet, including in Canada. In July 2019, the former struck a $600-million memorandum of understanding with the federal government to use its 300-unit network to provide service to rural and remote areas. Telesat is scheduled to have cross-country coverage in place by 2023. OneWeb had promised to deliver connections to the Canadian North by 2021, but filed for bankruptcy in March after a US$2-billion funding round from main backer SoftBank fell through. Access to its 74 satellites in orbit and technology could help Telesat in the crowded LEO space, which also includes SpaceX and Amazon.