OneWeb has Filed Going bankrupt and intending to sell its business, causing the company's plan to provide high-speed satellite Internet services around the world to end abruptly.
OneWeb Announced on friday It "voluntarily applied for relief under Chapter 11 of the [United States] Bankruptcy Law" and "plans to use these procedures for the sale of its business to maximize the value of the company." OneWeb made the decision "in failing to include SoftBank, the largest supporter in "After the investor received new funds there," the decision was largely due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Financial Times write. The Financial Times article said that OneWeb also "fired most of its employees on Friday."
OneWeb previously raised $ 3 billion in multiple rounds of funding and is seeking additional funding to fund its deployment and commercial launch. "Our current situation is the economic consequences of the COVID-19 crisis," OneWeb CEO Adrián Stekkel said in the bankruptcy announcement. "We remain convinced that the mission to connect all people around the world has social and economic value. "
One week after the bankruptcy announcement OneWeb expresses expectations "Our launch schedule and satellite manufacturing have been delayed due to increased travel restrictions and disruptions in the global supply chain."
OneWeb was founded in 2012 by Greg Wyler and was originally called WorldVu. OneWeb "said about 85% of 531 employees were laid off before filing for bankruptcy," Space News wrote on Friday. SpaceNews wrote that OneWeb's bankruptcy application showed that it "has a total debt of $ 2.1 billion, including $ 1.7 billion in senior secured financing, plus amounts owed to 1,000 to 5,000 creditors."
OneWeb is a UK-based company with its US headquarters in McLean, Virginia. OneWeb also operates a satellite production facility in Florida, Florida. Joint venture With Airbus. After SoftBank, OneWeb's largest shareholders are Qualcomm, Wyler's 1110 Ventures LLC and Airbus.
OneWeb has a "valuable global reach"
OneWeb has launched 74 satellites and demonstrated broadband speeds of more than 400Mbps and 32ms latency. The company is a major competitor to the SpaceX Starlink division, which owns Fired 362 satellites and plans to launch thousands. OneWeb and SpaceX satellites both operate in low-Earth orbit, so they can provide lower latency than traditional geostationary satellites.
OneWeb leads SpaceX in satellite competition, stable Approved by the Federal Communications Commission in June 2017, Before SpaceX done. The FCC stated at the time that OneWeb planned to serve the US and global markets through "720 low-Earth orbit satellites using the Ka [20 / 30GHz] and Ku [11 / 14GHz] bands."
OneWeb's bankruptcy announcement states that it owns the "valued global spectrum" rights, which could attract buyers. OneWeb said that it also "began developing on a range of user terminals targeted at various customer markets, and [and] half of its 44 ground stations have been completed or are in development". The Financial Times wrote that the 74 satellites currently deployed are "too small to provide telecommunications services or generate revenue."
Potential buyers may include Amazon Either FacebookThey are all constellations planning low-earth orbit broadband satellites. [Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos in February $ 4 billion sold Amazon stock, which gave him a lot of cash. ] Norwegian Space and Telesat also have low earth satellite programs.
OneWeb stated that "it has seen early global demand from governments and leaders in the automotive, marine, corporate and aviation industries." But OneWeb explained that in a pandemic, investors' willingness to fund companies has weakened.
From the beginning of this year, OneWeb has held high-level negotiations on investments, which will provide the company with full funding through its deployment and commercial launch. When the company was about to obtain financing, the process did not progress due to the financial impact and market turmoil associated with the spread of COVID-19.
SpaceX CEO and founder Elon Musk recently discussed the challenges of launching a low earth orbit satellite business, Say His goal is to make Starlink ultimately "in the non-bankruptcy category".