Eurobites: Eutelsat takes a stake in OneWeb


Also in today’s EMEA regional roundup: Nokia targets Industry 4.0; Deutsche Telekom operates 5G in the factory; Thales partners with Google for cloud services.

  • Eutelsat, the satellite company based in France, has increased his stake in Brittany OneWeb from 17.6% to 22.9%, spending $ 165 million to get there. Last week, Eutelsat shareholders rejected an unsolicited takeover bid by Patrick Drahi, the billionaire controlling shareholder of operator Altice. OneWeb itself has a somewhat turbulent history: it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in March 2020 before being resurrected by an unlikely combination of the UK government and Bharti boss Sunil Mittal. (See Eutelsat Founds Drahi Takeover Offer and New OneWeb Chapter with Northern Hemisphere Push.)
  • And in related news, Eutelsat’s Konnect Africa satellite was chosen by Globacom bring broadband to underserved areas of Nigeria. Globacom, marketed as Glo, is Nigeria’s second-largest operator, with a market share of around 28% and over 51 million subscribers.
  • Nokia lifted the veil on his MX Industrial Advantage offer, which he describes as an “industry-leading one-stop-shop scanning platform.” The hope is that this will make life easier for companies that are embarking on the so-called Industry 4.0 nirvana, where intelligently applied connectivity means everything in the factory / distribution center / everything works like magic. If you’re playing trendy bingo, MX Industrial Edge is also described as ‘future-ready’ and ‘mission critical’. Stay!
  • Deutsche Telekom has partnered with an industrial machinery manufacturer Trumpf to try out “location technology” (it helps you find things in the factory) on a 5G campus network. Previously, this technology usually relied on fixed cables to transmit the necessary data from Omlox satellites, but this has sometimes restricted the flexibility required in production processes: Using a 5G campus network, on the contrary, allows the location infrastructure to be installed and repositioned within a factory with a minimum of upheaval.
  • French aerospace company Thales has partnered with Google to deliver “state-controlled” cloud services for storing particularly sensitive state and corporate data. As Reuters reports, the two partners will jointly create a company based in France (with Thales as the majority shareholder) which will provide the usual Google Cloud services with the main difference that its network and its servers will be separate from those used by other Google customers.
  • Ofcom, the UK communications regulator, issued new orientation to video-sharing platforms like TikTok, Snapchat, and Vimeo in what is probably a desperate attempt to get them to clean up their action on content and make it, well, just less harmful. The guidelines expect these platforms to provide clear rules for uploading content, have straightforward reporting processes, and restrict access to “adult” sites.
  • Irish operator Eir says its 5G deployment has now put the technology within reach of more than 70% of the Irish population, covering 336 cities and 1,110 locations. Eir also extended its 13-year partnership with NTT Data UK. More recently, Eir awarded NTT UK data the managed services contract for its IT operations.

    ?? Paul Rainford, Associate Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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