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SpaceX provides lift-off for Singaporean broadband satellites

Stephen Kuper

Singapore’s Kacific Broadband Satellites Group’s first satellite, Kacific-1, was successfully launched onboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket in mid-December, marking a milestone for the business and its supporting partners.

SpaceX provides lift-off for Singaporean broadband satellites
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Gilbert + Tobin (G+T) has assisted leading alternative asset manager HRL Morrison & Co (MCo) in a mezzanine facility advanced by one of MCo’s managed clients to assist Singapore’s Kacific Broadband Satellites Group (Kacific) to fund the design, manufacture and launch of Kacific-1. 

Kacific-1 will provide internet connectivity across more than 25 Asia-Pacific countries (mostly in developing nations where fibre optics cables are challenging to install).

Kacific’s overall financing package comprised US$160 million long-term credit facilities from a group of Asian and European financiers (including the Asian Development Bank) with warrant options issued. The transaction also involved complex structuring and intercreditor arrangements with the senior financiers.

The G+T team was led by Banking + Infrastructure partner Robert Trowbridge, supported by lawyers James Frixou and Amanda Atkins and consultant Mark Nichol.

A statement from Mr Trowbridge and Mr Frixou said, “We are proud to have been involved in the first satellite launch and financing for Kacific-1, which will bring fast and affordable internet services to millions living in remote communities in the Asia-Pacific region.”

This deal underpins G+T’s position as a leader advising on the most complex cross-border/structured finance transactions in Australia and Asia Pacific.

Gilbert + Tobin’s Banking + Infrastructure team is recognised in the leading legal directories, including most recently being ranked at Band 1 for Banking and Finance - Acquisition Finance by Chambers Asia-Pacific 2020.

Kacific is a next-generation broadband satellite operator. The company is committed to providing universal, fast, high-quality broadband access at an affordable cost using robust technologies and an agile business model.

Founded in 2013 by a core team of senior satellite professionals, Kacific is backed by a group of investors with experience in global telecommunications and infrastructure.

Kacific-1, Kacific’s first Ka-band high throughput satellite, launched in 2019 to stream high-speed, low-cost, ultra-reliable broadband to rural and suburban areas of the Pacific and south-east Asia.

Kacific is a wholesale business selling to telecommunications operators, internet service providers, governments and other service providers.

Kacific-1 is a next-generation geostationary satellite operating in the Ka-band frequency spectrum. The satellite, which launched in December 2019, streams stable broadband via 56 powerful spot beams.

Wide-reaching coverage will extend over 25 countries in Asia Pacific with populations spread across their many islands, mountainous and rural regions.

 

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