Intelsat have released a statement indicating that they expect OneWeb (WorldVu Satellites) and SoftBank (SoftBank Group Corp) to exercise their “get-out” clauses concerning the Combination Agreement – merger agreement – which would have seen OneWeb integrate itself into a new Intelsat company, and SoftBank make a US$1.79 billion investment in the new company. The deadline of midnight EDT, 31 May 2017, was passed without Intelsat fulfilling the minimum requirements.
The “Combination Agreement” was conditional on Intelsat coming to a settlement with its bondholders on an exchange agreement concerning some of the outstanding senior unsecured notes issued by Intelsat and some of its wholly-owned subsidiaries. Intelsat failed to convince its bondholders to agree to the exchange and therefore failed to meet the 85 per cent minimum stipulated in the contract.
Intelsat has stated that despite this likely set-back, cooperation between itself, OneWeb and SoftBank will still go ahead to the tune of an earlier agreement between the companies. The two operators will begin joint efforts to “develop integrated solutions” to utilise both fleets in aid of SoftBank services in a number of fields covering: mobility, energy, government and connected car.
Another report by Bloomberg.com, quotes an unidentified insider stating that SoftBank has other major satellite operators in its sights, such as Inmarsat Plc, Telesat Canada and SES SA.