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Viasat Inks Alliance With Blacktree Technology in Australia

Zacks Equity Research
·3 min read
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Viasat, Inc. VSAT recently communicated that it inked a Strategic Alliance Agreement (SAA) with Blacktree Technology, an Australia-based communications systems design and integration company, in November 2019. Per the SAA, Viasat and Blacktree will work closely to address the needs of the Australian Defence Force. The companies will provide in-country manufacturing and support services for Ultra High Frequency (UHF) satellite communications (SATCOM) systems.

Headquartered in Canberra, Viasat’s Australian Government Systems business provides a wide range of defense technology capabilities and sovereign resources to meet Australia’s requirements. The agreement will likely play an important role in enhancing UHF support and maintenance resources in Australia. Also, this is going to provide opportunities to investigate export of UHF products and services to Five Eyes and coalition UHF military SATCOM user nations.

Viasat is considered to be a leader in UHF SATCOM and is working to assure global 25-kHz Demand-Assigned Multiple-Access and Integrated Waveform networks and services. This has been enabled by the company’s Visual Integrated Satellite communications Information, Operation and Networking software platform.

Beginning in 2021, Viasat intends to launch a new, global ViaSat-3 constellation of high-capacity communications satellites that will improve responsiveness of defense mission threats. Viasat is ramping up investments in the development of its revolutionary ViaSat-3 broadband communications platform, which will boast nearly 10 times the bandwidth capacity of ViaSat-2. These satellites will be capable of covering one-third of the world, including all Americas. The second ViaSat-3 will cover the Europe, the Middle East and Africa region.

The ViaSat-3 platform will help to form a global broadband network with sufficient network capacity to allow better consumer choices with an affordable, high-quality, high-speed Internet and video streaming service. In a nutshell, Viasat has garnered enough economics of scale and scope to serve vast emerging markets in South America, Africa, the Middle East and Western Asia. Hence, momentous market traction of ViaSat-1 and ViaSat-2 satellites, coupled with strategically planned ViaSat 3 satellites, are expected to provide Viasat with a solid competitive edge over peers, thereby bolstering growth in the long run.

In third-quarter fiscal 2020, Viasat’s revenues from Government Systems increased 16.7% year over year to $291.8 million, owing to augmented positions in the data links, SATCOM and mobile networking offerings. The segment’s operating profit was $59.1 million, up 18.4% year over year. Adjusted EBITDA was $77.8 million, up 12.8% year over year, led by robust performance across government satellite communication systems, reconnaissance, tactical data links and global intelligence surveillance.

Viasat topped earnings estimates in the trailing four quarters, the surprise being 402%, on average. Other prominent players in the space include PCTEL, Inc. PCTI, Motorola Solutions, Inc. MSI and Qualcomm Incorporated QCOM.

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