The shareholder group of Inmarsat, a London-based satellite telecommunications company, has agreed to its sale to US-based Viasat for $4 billion. The cash-and-stock deal is valued at $7.3 billion, including debt. The consortium members, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, Warburg Pincus and Apax Partners, will remain minority investors in the combined business.
Inmarsat shareholder group supports combination with Viasat to create a new global communications innovator
LONDON, UK, Nov. 8, 2021 /CNW/ – The shareholder group of Inmarsat (“Inmarsat” or the “Company”) – which comprises Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (“CPP Investments”), Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board (“Ontario Teachers'”), Warburg Pincus LLC (“Warburg Pincus”) and funds advised by Apax Partners LLP (“Apax”), (together, the “Consortium”) acting through their jointly-owned entity, Connect BidCo – today welcomes the announcement of a definitive agreement between Viasat, Inc. (NASDAQ: VSAT) (“Viasat”) and the shareholders of Inmarsat to combine and create a leading global communications innovator with enhanced scale and scope to affordably, securely and reliably connect the world.
The proposed combination integrates two businesses headquartered in the United Kingdom (“U.K.”) and United States, respectively, which together generate $4.1 billion in annual revenues1 and operate a premier fleet of 19 in-orbit satellites with 10 more spacecraft under construction for planned launch in the next three years. It brings together two organisations with highly complementary technology assets, resources, capabilities and service portfolios.
Together, Viasat and Inmarsat are positioned to deliver an improved communication offering to customers globally. The combined business will have the resources to accelerate innovation, delivering enhanced quality of service (speed, bandwidth, flexibility, reliability, low latency, coverage, security), product choice, and greater value to existing and new customers. Together, Viasat and Inmarsat will enable the availability of advanced new services in mobile and fixed segments, driving greater customer choice in broadband communications and narrowband services (including Internet of Things or “IoT”).
The Consortium has accepted Viasat’s offer for the entire ordinary share capital of Inmarsat and will retain a significant minority stake in the combined company. Under the terms of the agreement, Inmarsat shareholders will receive $4.0 billion composed of $850 million in cash, subject to adjustments, and approximately 46.36 million newly issued Viasat shares, which represent a 37.5% ownership on a fully diluted basis, valued at $3.1 billion, based on the closing price of $67.00 per Viasat share on November 5, 2021.
The Consortium expects the combined company to build on the strategic and operational progress achieved at Inmarsat to date, and by remaining significant minority shareholders, it is backing a transaction which presents strong industrial logic. Under the Consortium’s ownership, Inmarsat has invested to enhance its go-to-market, product and network capabilities, including the recent launch of GX-5 and the upcoming launches of the I-6 satellites serving the Company’s L-band business for the next 15 years.
Inmarsat has an exceptional presence in the growing global mobility segment and is at the forefront of network design, including its recently announced multi-dimensional mesh network. The Company is preparing to expand its global network later this year with its most powerful and advanced commercial communications satellite ever.
Viasat plans to build on Inmarsat’s presence in the U.K. and is committed to preserving and growing the investment of the combined company in U.K. space communications, as well as supporting the recently published National Space Strategy. The combined company will cooperatively engage with the U.K. government with a view to operating in the U.K. consistent with the commitments previously made by Inmarsat/Connect BidCo and expects continued constructive engagement across the U.K.’s thriving innovation ecosystem. It further intends to work closely with the U.K. government to bring additional space capabilities and other advanced technologies to the country as well as long-term, highly skilled engineering and related jobs for U.K.-based employees. Viasat plans to preserve and grow Inmarsat’s London headquarters, as well as its footprint in Australia and Canada and across Europe, the Middle East and Africa and Asia Pacific.
Rajeev Suri, Chief Executive Officer of Inmarsat, said: “I am pleased our shareholders have supported a combination that enables Inmarsat to join forces with Viasat, a recognized global innovator in space and broadband communications. With our shareholders backing, Inmarsat has successfully returned to strong growth, weathered the pandemic and renewed its technology capabilities. I want to thank our shareholders for enabling Inmarsat to enter this transaction from a position of strength, as well as for their vote of confidence in the combination by becoming equity holders in the combined group.”
The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions including Viasat shareholder approval and regulatory approvals.
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About Canada Pension Plan Investment Board
Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPP Investments™) is a professional investment management organization that manages the Fund in the best interest of the more than 20 million contributors and beneficiaries of the Canada Pension Plan. In order to build diversified portfolios of assets, investments are made around the world in public equities, private equities, real estate, infrastructure and fixed income. Headquartered in Toronto, with offices in Hong Kong, London, Luxembourg, Mumbai, New York City, San Francisco, São Paulo and Sydney, CPP Investments is governed and managed independently of the Canada Pension Plan and at arm’s length from governments. At June 30, 2021, the Fund totalled $519.6 billion. For more information, please visit www.cppinvestments.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter.