Sky and Space Global, which works to provide affordable communications to the world's equatorial regions, has expanded its reach into Indonesia and Suriname.
The UK-based company has signed a binding memorandum of understanding agreement with Cendrawasih Teknologi Nusantara (CTN) to provide the Indonesian company with nanosatellite connectivity services. The agreement will enable CTN to offer the services to its individual and small business customers throughout the island nation.
“A successful collaboration with CTN will provide SAS with initial access to the fast-growing Indonesian market,” says Meir Moalem, Managing Director and CEO of SAS. CTN is an Indonesian based provider of data connectivity services via satellite for the cellular, banking, plantation, farming, oil and gas and government sectors of the country’s economy. CTN also provides data connectivity to institutions and retail customers throughout Indonesia.
With a population of over 260 million spread out over thousands of islands, Indonesia is an ideal market for SAS’ nanosatellite technology. Moalem notes that the agreement with CTN will enable SAS to leverage and expand its existing connectivity services across the entire Asia Pacific region.
In addition to the MoU in Indonesia, SAS has also signed a binding MoU agreement with Surinamese ISP Foundation Busie Suriname, which was granted an Internet Service Provider (ISP) license in 2016 by the Telecoms Authority Suriname (TAS) and provides internet service solutions to individuals and businesses in rural Suriname, South America. Due to the geographic location and number of inhabitants outside of large cities, internet and online connectivity services are unreliable and expensive.
The binding MoU formalises the commercial and technical cooperation between SAS and FBS and marks the commencement of discussions for the provision of SAS’ affordable and reliable connectivity services to the country. The agreement is the first of its kind to be signed with a provider in the region, and validates the SAS nano-satellite narrowband connectivity platform.
Referring to the agreement in Suriname, Moalem said: "After a successful demonstration in Guyana last month I am pleased to announce we have secured an agreement with a Surinamese local internet provider.”
SAS is the first company to successfully use narrowband connectivity provided by nanosatellites to deliver a voice call, text messaging and financial transactions capabilities. The cost is a fraction of traditional communications providers.
In 2017, SAS successfully launched its ‘3 Diamonds’ nanosatellites as a proof of concept. The launch of the first batch of nanosatellites remains on track for 2019. The timetable calls for launching a constellation of 200 nanosatellites beginning next year when partial service is due to begin. Full scale deployment is scheduled for 2020.