Lightsquared and Inmarsat moving forward with co-operation agreements

Lightsquared and Inmarsat logos

The Satellite Network operator/manager Lightsquared has notified Inmarsat that it now wishes to move forward with the next stage of the agreement between the two organizations.

Both Lightsquared and Inmarsat signed an agreement in December of 2007 whereby Inmarsat will support a spectrum plan that increases the total capacity available through the Lightsquared ATC network.

For their part, Lightsquared will begin paying out Inmarsat $115 million every year increasing at 3% per year with a minimum commitment of five years. Phase 1 of the agreement was designed to enable the rebranding and efficient re-use of radio spectrum covering all of North America through a transition period lasting a year and a half.

Overall, this agreement plays two crucial roles. It will aid Lightsquared in the launching of the 4G ancillary terrestrial component (ATC) network and at the same time protecting the continued growth of Inmarsat’s mobile satellite services across the world.

“Inmarsat has already initiated programs to ensure our customers are protected from interference risks and has conducted analysis of the issues over an extended period,” said Perry Melton, Inmarsat’s chief operating officer. “Inmarsat is confident the effects on customers will be minimal, and where needed, will be dealt with responsibly.”

In a letter to distribution partners, Chris D’Aguiar, vice-president of sales and marketing, highlighted the measures already being taken to minimize the impact on users. They include:

* The Inmarsat B to FleetBroadband migration incentive

* Safety services over SwiftBroadband program

* Ongoing efforts encouraging users to upgrade to more spectrum-efficient broadband services.