Latin America boosts Viasat's satellite services ops

Bnamericas Published: Wednesday, February 08, 2023
Latin America boosts Viasat's satellite services ops

Latin America was among the silver linings for US satellite and connectivity services group Viasat, as the company reported overall weak results for its fiscal third quarter 2023, ended on December 31.

Worldwide, Viasat's net revenues amounted to US$714mn for the quarter, down from US$720mn in Q3 FY22. In the first nine months of the fiscal year, revenue reached US$2.14bn, up from US$2.08bn in the same period of FY22.

In the core Satellite Services segment, quarterly revenue was slightly down year-on-year, with a decline in US residential subscribers being partially offset by higher fixed broadband ARPU, higher IFC (in-flight connectivity) revenue – from 17% more aircraft in service compared to the same period of last year – and organic growth in international fixed broadband in Latin America.

"We are confident our success in the North American IFC market can be extended globally, and that our initial forays into Australia, Brazil, Europe and, more recently, China are indicative of that," Viasat said in a financial statement.

In Brazil, the company signed a contract last year with aircraft maker Embraer to have IFC available on the Embraer E2 family.

More recently, Viasat, which uses the capacity of Telebras' SGDC satellite in Brazil, partnered with Banco do Brasil's Broto digital platform for rural producers to offer satellite services to small and medium-sized farmers.

Late in 2021, the company also reached an agreement with Intercorp Peru to connect underserved communities in Latin America. 

Intercorp will provide additional investment and local resources to speed the deployment while assisting with distribution and fulfillment locally 

Under the terms of that deal, the satellite connectivity service will align with the ViaSat-2 satellite footprint, as well as the upcoming ViaSat-3 satellite coverage over Latin America. Initial coverage areas will include Jamaica, Guatemala and Honduras.

More recently, Viasat announced a new partnership with Microsoft’s Airband, becoming their first satellite partner in the initiative to help deliver internet access to 10mn people around the globe, including Guatemala and Mexico in Latin America.


In its financial statement, the company also that "after a long, painstaking process" it has completed construction and testing of the first ViaSat-3 satellite and it is due for launch in the first week of April, lifting off from Florida.

"ViaSat-3 will be able to serve areas that are currently full and to introduce updated plans with higher speeds, more bandwidth and greater value," CEO Mark Dankberg told investors in an earnings call.

According to the executive, the satellite is set to provide greater capacity to existing customers in the Americas, as it also adds to the "good growth we've had in Brazil and Mexico and opens additional geographic and vertical markets." 

The long-delayed launch of the first of Viasat's 3TB-class internet satellite is aimed at boosting its bandwidth capacity as the company battles SpaceX’s Starlink in an increasingly competitive space connectivity race.

In recent months, Starlink has managed to win key contracts, including with governments, to take satellite internet to rural and underserved regions in Latin America, including locations in Mexico, Chile, Jamaica and parts of Central America and the Caribbean.

"Fiscal year 2024 will be an exciting year for us as we begin to deploy and scale our ViaSat-3 constellation, including the first two satellite launches. While growth timing reflects the delays incurred in launching ViaSat-3, the opportunities are very attractive," the company said.

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