Bharti to invest $500 mn more in OneWeb

Bharti Enterprises will invest an additional $500 million in OneWeb, via its arm Bharti Global, to become the largest shareholder in the satellite communications company.

“OneWeb has completed its transformation with the exercise of a ‘call option’ by Bharti to invest an additional $500 million into the company,” OneWeb said in a statement. With this, the total funding raised by OneWeb would be about $2.4 billion.

“The Call Option is expected to be completed in the second half of 2021, subject to regulatory approvals. On completion of the call option and with Eutelsat’s $550 million investment, Bharti will hold 38.6%. The U.K. Government, Eutelsat and Softbank will each own 19.3%,” the company said.

It, however, added that the final shareholding structure may alter to the extent a member of the shareholders’ group chooses to exercise a part of this call option.

OneWeb CEO Neil Masterson said, “The completion of our funding puts OneWeb in a powerful position. We have significantly lower entry cost of any LEO [low earth orbit]. We benefit from $3.4 bn of pre-Chapter 11 investment by the original shareholders, making new OneWeb a three-times lower cost Constellation.”

“With the forthcoming launch we will have completed 40% of our network. We are intently focused on execution and just 10 more launches will enable us to deliver global coverage,” he added.

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