OneWeb, a global communications company with a mission to bring connectivity to everyone, everywhere, announces it has secured its largest fundraising round to date with the successful raise of $1.25 billion in new capital. This brings the total funds raised to $3.4 billion.
The new funds, following the successful first launch of OneWeb’s satellites, would enable the company to accelerate the development of their “truly global” communications network by 2021. OneWeb’s network system intends to deliver high speed, low latency, seamless broadband access, everywhere on earth.
“OneWeb has extended its first-mover advantage and is on track to become the world’s largest and first truly global communications network,” said Marcelo Claure, COO of SoftBank Group Corp. and CEO of SoftBank Group International. “At SoftBank, our aim is to invest in transformative companies at the leading edge of technology disruption. OneWeb’s potential is undeniable as the growth in data from 5G, IoT, autonomous driving and other new technologies drives demand for capacity above and beyond the limits of the existing infrastructure.”
OneWeb’s network will support the emerging digital economy including advanced mobile application needs. To support the deployment of the network system, OneWeb relies on high-tech satellite operation centers in both Virginia and in London, and has installed ground stations in Italy, Norway, and Canada, with more on the way. A global company, OneWeb now has offices in Virginia, London, Florida, California, and has recruited top talent around the world to execute the rollout of its system.
Joint Venture Airbus
OneWeb’s satellites, produced through its joint venture with Airbus doing business as ‘OneWeb Satellites’, would ramp-up production this spring at its new, “state-of-the-art” manufacturing facility in Exploration Park, Florida. Following the company’s successful launch of satellites on February 27th, OneWeb will embark on the largest satellite launch campaign in history. Starting in Q4, OneWeb will begin monthly launches of more than 30 satellites at a time, creating an initial constellation of 650 satellites to enable full global coverage. After this first phase, OneWeb will add more satellites to its constellation to meet growing demands.
“This latest funding round, our largest to date, makes OneWeb’s service inevitable and is a vote of confidence from our core investor base in our business model and the OneWeb value proposition,” said Adrian Steckel, CEO of OneWeb. “With the recent successful launch of our first six satellites, near-completion of our innovative satellite manufacturing facility with our partner Airbus, progress towards fully securing our ITU priority spectrum position, and the signing of our first customer contracts, OneWeb is moving from the planning and development stage to deployment of our full constellation. Our success is made possible thanks to the backing of our investors and the cooperation of our world class commercial partners including Arianespace, Airbus, Qualcomm Technologies, Virgin, and Hughes.”
OneWeb’s high speed, low latency, network would offer game-changing Mobility solutions to industries that rely on global connectivity, such as Aviation, Maritime, Automotive, Trains and more.
“We are committed to bridging the digital divide, and this funding helps ensure our globally shared dream will soon become a reality,” said Greg Wyler, Chairman and Founder of OneWeb. “We look forward to continuing our work with the many supportive and forward-looking Governments, ISP’s, and Telecom Operators to help them broaden the reach of connectivity to connect people everywhere.”