Viasat Inc., the Carlsbad-based global communications company, confirmed they will not be moving forward on a planned deal with Eutelsat Communications, a European satellite operator with its headquarters in Paris, France, for use of the Viasat-3 satellite.
The decision stems from Eutelsat’s option to pursue a “local market alternative,” according to a news release.
Rick Baldridge, Viasat’s president and COO released a statement saying in part: “Viasat remains excited about its ViaSat-3 program for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), which is well underway and on track.”
Baldridge added that he believes there is significant interest in the ViaSat-3 program from prospective regional partners, as ViaSat-3 is expected to be the highest capacity communications satellite system in the world when it launches.
The halted plans won’t affect the Viasat-3 program, and won’t have a direct impact on existing contracts, according to the news release.
“The current Viasat / Eutelsat joint venture, which has been in operation for more than one year, will continue to be governed under the existing agreements,” Baldridge said. “Viasat’s joint ownership of the KA-SAT satellite is currently serving Viasat’s commercial aviation and government customers as well as direct-to-home residential subscribers throughout Europe.”
Viasat and Eutelsat closed a broadband joint venture in March 2017 that gave Viasat joint ownership of the KA-SAT satellite.
The joint venture also enabled Viasat to create a new consumer retail service in Europe, which is currently in early-stage operations and focuses on bringing enhanced broadband internet service plans to select European countries.