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Inmarsat shares sharply up on US broadband deal
|19 августа 2010|
Shares in Inmarsat PLC increased sharply Wednesday as the mobile satellite communications company said the first phase of a $337.5 million broadband collaboration deal in North America was underway.Under the terms of the deal, wholesale broadband company LightSquared will pay Inmarsat a total of $337.5 million over the next 18 months as part of a plan to re-band and reuse L-band radio spectrum in North America to meet a growing demand for wireless broadband.
At 1308 GMT Inmarsat was the highest riser on the FTSE 100 Index, trading up 7.6%, or 52 pence, at 738 pence.LightSquared is controlled by private-equity firm Harbinger Capital Partners, which is trying to build a nationwide broadband wireless network in the United States. Harbinger plans to install 40,000 wireless base stations and launch two satellites to cover 92% of the U.S. population within four-and-a-half years.
Last month Harbinger awarded a $7 billion equipment contract to Nokia Siemens Networks.
Liberum Capital analyst Mark James said the deal was "very good news" for Inmarsat. He calculates the net present value of all potential Inmarsat receipts, less costs, as 232 pence a share.
Inmarsat has already received an initial payment of $81.25 million from LightSquared and will receive further installments of $40 million every three months to a total of $337.5 million to compensate for the cost of network modifications.
Inmarsat has already begun the transition to a modified spectrum plan to increase spectrum contiguity.
Inmarsat and LightSquared also have the option until Jan. 1 2013 to trigger phase two of the plan, which would involve a 30-month transition process and annual payments to Inmarsat of $115 million.