Kacific Accepts 2018 Better Satellite World Award

Kacific founder and CEO, Christian Patouraux, accepted the 2018 Better Satellite World Award at a ceremony in London on Monday night in recognition of the company’s work bringing affordable connectivity via next-generation satellites to the people of South East Asia and the Pacific.

Christian Patouraux with Kacific leadership and supporters

Christian Patouraux with Kacific leadership and supporters

Bestowed by the Space & Satellite Professionals International (SSPI), the award honours companies who use satellite systems to make the world a more prosperous, healthier, better-educated, sustainable and inclusive home for humankind.

“When I started Kacific, I wasn’t interested in following the status quo. By serving only narrow, lucrative telecoms segments, the status quo was leaving many populations behind and increasing the digital divide,” said Christian Patouraux. “Kacific didn’t re-invent the wheel, but my team and I took advantage of innovative new space technology and operated a lean organisation to match the cost expectations of emerging markets.”

“The flagship project in our proof-of-concept service connects the Vanuatu Interisland Telemedicine and Learning Network. The Network has already saved the lives of a number of people in emergency situations, because of the speed with which outer island health clinics can contact the main hospitals and specialist doctors. So, we know that our satellite, Kacific1, will make a tangible difference to people’s lives. This service is just one of several community-based projects we are currently operating in Asia Pacific. We are honoured to receive this award ahead of 2019, when the services of our next-generation satellite commence,” said Patouraux.

Once launched in 2019, Kacific’s first satellite, Kacific1, will help connect more hospitals, clinics, schools, libraries, post offices, police stations and many other public institutions in rural areas where terrestrial broadband infrastructure is not an option or not economical. The satellite beams will cover previously isolated or underserved regions of South Asia, South East Asia, Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia, providing a channel for connectivity.

“Building a 4G LTE network has never been cheaper or easier” says Adrian Potter

Adrian Potter, our Vice President of Special Projects, is also an excellent and vibrant writer. He’s penned a piece encouraging entrepreneurs and smart businesses to take advantage of low CAPEX costs to set up Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) and mobile networks in remote regions. Here are some highlights from his piece below:


Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) and mobile networks are no longer the sole domain of the big end of town.

With everyone so focused on the main population centres and suffering from an ARPU race to the bottom, resulting in a bottom line bloodbath, only a few are looking to the more remote and rural locations. Most believe these locations are too remote or too difficult to be profitable. Current mainstream thinking is that these rural and remote areas should be left to governments for subsidies from tax payers or universal service obligations on the major telcos.

When my father moved our family to the Pacific Islands in the late 1970s, I remember him saying, “son, there’s always opportunity for smart men on the frontier”. This is never truer than it is today.

Remote connectivity for 4G base stations is simple and cheap now

Forget expensive fixed digital microwave links on distant mountain tops, often with single points of failure. The new breed of High Throughput Satellites (HTS) using Ku and Ka Band are making connectivity to these far-flung locations easier and cheaper. Prices are already significantly under USD$300 Mbps a month for true broadband speeds into inexpensive fixed antennas of 1.2m or less. Forget the nonsense about LEO and MEO vs GEO latency. This is a marketing myth and sales tactic used by those operators seeking an advantage where one does not exist. In all but two very unique use cases, such as high frequency share trading, latency is completely irrelevant to the end user experience. Web browsing, VoIP, video streaming, Skype, Facetime etc. or almost 99.99% of the internet has no issues with GEO latency, FACT.


Adrian’s right, it is an interesting time to be operating in telecommunications and internet services, especially in the fast-developing regions of Asia and the Pacific. There’s an incredible demand from populations all over the fast-growing APAC region. There are untapped markets that can be reached effectively by the right operators with very low risk. Which is why we offer our partners simple, affordable infrastructure and fair wholesale prices.

You can read the full article on Adrian’s Linked In here

New Zealand Sales Director Matteo Catanuto speaks with NZ’s #1 Podcast

This week, Matteo Catanuto, our Sales Director for New Zealand & Pacific Region, headed to the NZ Tech Podcast studio to discuss satellite broadband’s role in New Zealand.

Alongside host Paul Spain and Eric Chang, from consumer tech brand Xiaomi, Matteo shared some insights into the new developments in satellite and how that translates to better broadband performance for people and businesses in Asia Pacific.

In New Zealand, a long, mountainous country with just over 4.5 million people spread throughout rural areas, satellite fills the gaps for those who today can only get slow, expensive internet or none at all. Kacific complements fibre by offering different options from mobile backhaul, and rural connectivity to bringing broadband to aeroplanes, boats and ferries.

You can listen to the full podcast here – skip to 39:30 to hear more from Matteo on Kacific’s impact in New Zealand.

 

Eric Chang, Paul Spain and Matteo Catanuto.

(L-R) Eric Chang, Paul Spain and Matteo Catanuto.

Senior Government Ministers and Public Servants Mark Milestone in Satellite Construction at Boeing Factory

Senior members of the Vanuatu Government, trade and tourism offices recently visited the Boeing satellite factory to mark the construction milestone of Kacific-1, a next-generation satellite which will stream high-speed low-cost broadband to Vanuatu from next year.

The satellite is owned by Kacific, a private company registered in Vanuatu, and when it launches in 2019 it will be the first satellite owned by a Vanuatu-registered company. The construction has moved into initial testing stages, and the party were involved in discussions on how satellite broadband can bring both economic and social benefit to the country.

“For nations like ours with many islands, satellite broadband is an important technology to connect our communities and open opportunities in education, healthcare, commerce and tourism,” said Deputy Prime Minister, Bob Loughman. “We are also considering the effects of climate change and considering how we respond to environmental changes to secure a prosperous and safe future for younger generations.”

Vanuatu Ministers in the hall of flags at Boeing

In attendance were Deputy Prime Minister, Bob Loughman; Permanent Representative of the Republic of Vanuatu to the United Nations and Ambassador to the United States, H.E. Ambassador Odo Tevi; Director General of the Ministry of Climate Change, Jesse Benjamin; Chairman of Vanuatu Tourism Office, Avio Roberts; and Trade Commissioner of the Republic of Vanuatu in California, Millie Ogden.

Kacific-1 will stream high-speed broadband to the Pacific islands, which can be used in a range of areas from education and healthcare to disaster response and tourism.

Boeing has started integration and testing of the Kacific-1 payload, which consists of the communications electronics. It has also started integration and testing of the satellite platform which includes the power and propulsion systems. The communications antennas are being prepared for range tests starting in the next few weeks.

In recent months Kacific has employed dedicated sales representatives to establish more service provider relationships to grow broadband services in Asia, Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia leading up to the launch of Kacific-1 in 2019.

Kacific announced as recipient of the 2018 Better Satellite World Award from Space & Satellite Professionals International

Space & Satellite Professionals International (SSPI) recently announced that Kacific will receive a 2018 Better Satellite World Award.

The Better Satellite World Award honours established companies along with disruptive innovators who use satellite systems to make the world a more prosperous, healthier, better-educated, sustainable and inclusive home for humankind.

An international jury consisting of a broad cross-section of industry thought leaders and distinguished professionals selected Kacific as a recipient.

“The modern world literally runs on satellite technology though few of the world’s people know it.”

– Robert Bell, SSPI Executive Director

 

“With this year’s recipients, we honour organizations using satellite to spread economic opportunity and improve resilience in the face of adversity.  Their work – little known to the world – is making that world a better, safer and more equitable place,” said Bell.

Our difference

Kacific was founded with the purpose of making a rapid and lasting difference to the people of South East Asia and the Pacific by providing high-quality, low-cost satellite broadband accessible from a small, easy-to-install and affordable antenna.

Once launched in 2019 Kacific’s first satellite, Kacific-1, will help connect hospitals, clinics, schools, libraries, post offices, police stations and many other public institutions in rural areas where terrestrial broadband infrastructure is not an option or not economical. Combining inexpensive, small and maintenance-free ground equipment with the highest satellite signal strength in the region, Kacific delivers low-cost, high-speed internet to local service providers and thereby enables local communities to truly participate in the digital world.

Medical centre in Dili using a small VSAT to connect to broadband internet

Medical centre in Dili using a small VSAT to connect to broadband internet

Connectivity in developing areas fosters better education and healthcare outcomes

With high-speed internet available anywhere, e-education becomes a reality to provide primary and secondary school children with skills necessary to keep pace with the evolving demands in tertiary education and the job market. Connectivity also provides rural and extra-urban medical facilities with critical information and communication capacities for emergency situations, using medical databases, logistics tools and live remote access to specialist doctors, allowing them to save more lives and maintain a better standard of healthcare overall. By enabling a better use of local infrastructure, Kacific makes rural towns and villages safer and more rewarding places to live in.

We will be accepting this award at the Better Satellite World Awards Dinner on 3 December in London.

Read more about the award and SSPI here

Connecting the world, village by village: Five reasons why satellite is the key

1.    Reaching locations that other technologies can’t reach

The very nature of satellite technology means it is often the only viable solution for areas where geography makes access most difficult. Where other methods of connectivity are either substandard, uneconomical or completely absent, only satellite communication technology can deliver affordable and reliable broadband connectivity direct-to-premises. The many thousands of isolated islands dotted across the Pacific Ocean provide a stark illustration of the limitations of traditional terrestrial approaches to connectivity.

2.    Frugal solutions

Cutting edge technologies are not suitable for many emerging countries as they require high levels of power supply and specialised education to operate. What’s more, they are often delicately constructed, unproven, and expensive.

Technologies need to be appropriate for the markets they serve and provide service at a price point that changes the overall market dynamic. The best term for describing such technologies is frugal. Frugal should not be confused with cheap or low-quality goods. Frugal means consciously adapted to meet local market conditions.

High-throughput Ka-band satellites represent a frugal technology that has particular potential in South-East Asia and the Pacific Islands in providing a universal, fast broadband service. HTS satellites have been in use since the early 2000s and are proven to provide much higher levels of throughput — up to 20 times that of the older FSS satellites. Kacific’s Ka-band satellite is a frugal technology: a scaled-down, intelligently targeted version of large HTS, co-owned with a partner in a condo arrangement.

3.    Designed for the sharing economy

The number of communications satellites is growing steadily, and operators are systematically launching payloads with excess capacity. Nimble players with key know-how can take advantage of this arbitrage opportunity. The key point is; you don’t have to build a constellation to provide a cost-effective, multi-continent service. Leasing excess capacity on existing satellites and utilising condominium satellites, where several players share the ownership of a satellite, present good opportunities to provide services to underserved regions at a game-changing price per gigabyte.

4.    Disaster recovery

Disaster recovery is a major issue for isolated regions throughout the world. Every year cyclones cause massive disruption to Pacific nations. In the aftermath of the Cyclone Winston that hit Fiji in February 2016, lack of communications significantly hampered rescue and recovery efforts. Equally powerful hurricanes lash the Caribbean, tsunamis threaten coastal villages across Asia, and earthquakes lay waste to remote and isolated regions all along the ring of fire. When these affect terrestrial communications, as they so often do, information flows are restricted, aid distribution is hampered, lives are lost and recovery is long delayed.

When the lone undersea fiber-optic cable linking the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) to the rest of the world was struck by a boulder in July of 2015, telecommunications, banking, healthcare and other services were disrupted to such an extent that the government declared a state of emergency.

Kacific has been working with several governments who are interested in providing increased resiliency and who recognise that satellites can address their requirements better than cable.

5.    Spots not constellations

Constellations provide a blanket of coverage, but in island nations and over vast terrains, widespread coverage is an ineffective use of the payload. Targeted beams can place capacity exactly where it is needed, whether it be over separate islands or rural regions. These spot beams are more concentrated in power than wide beams, meaning end users get a stronger signal and wastage is at a minimum. A smaller coverage area also reduces the risk of interference with other transmissions using the same frequencies, making the service more reliable.

John Hawker strengthens Kacific sales team, leading efforts across Melanesia and the Pacific

 

John Hawker,

Kacific Broadband Satellites has appointed John Hawker as Vice President Sales, Melanesia and the Pacific.

John has held senior roles in both the telecommunications and satellite industries in several of Kacific’s key markets throughout the Pacific and South East Asia. His experience in developing broadcast, data and telecommunication networks is highly relevant to the company’s plans for the region.

John comes to Kacific after serving as VP Sales Australia, PNG and Pacific islands for ABS Global. He previously held the position of Director, Asia Pacific for International Datacasting.

At Kacific he will establish service provider relationships to grow broadband services in Melanesia and the Pacific, including Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji, Micronesia, Tuvalu, French Polynesia and Kiribati.

He will be able to draw on his experience with VSAT service providers in the Pacific, Southeast Asia and Africa as he helps the company forge strategic alliances to expand the Kacific ecosystem in the region leading up to the launch of Kacific-1 in 2019.

Kacific appoints Matteo Catanuto to head sales in New Zealand and the Pacific

Kacific Broadband Satellites has appointed Matteo Catanuto as Vice President Sales, New Zealand and the Pacific Region.

Matteo is a senior telecommunications sales professional who joins Kacific following his role at Digicel Samoa as Sales Director. Prior to that he held high-level sales and business development roles working for TelstraClear, Orcon, Spark Digital, and Digital Mobile (part of the Vodafone New Zealand Group). He has extensive experience in New Zealand and the Pacific in areas highly relevant to Kacific’s growth strategy, including satellite connectivity, bandwidth and solution sales.

In his role with Kacific he will be responsible for establishing service provider networks and distribution channels in New Zealand, American Samoa, Samoa, Tonga, Niue and the Cook Islands for the company’s range of satellite broadband products and services leading up to the launch of Kacific-1 in 2019.

Matteo holds a MSc from Liceo Scientifico, Milan and reports to the Kacific’s Chief Commercial Officer.

Kacific selects Kratos to build state-of-the-art multi-site gateways for Kacific-1

 

 

 

SAN DIEGO, CA, September 6, 2018 – Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. (Nasdaq: KTOS), a leading National Security Solutions provider, announced today that it has been awarded an $11 million contract by Kacific Broadband Satellites, to design and build ground stations for Kacific’s new Ka-band High Throughput Satellite (HTS) network. The Kacific-1 HTS satellite, launching in 2019, will deliver broadband services to Pacific rim and South East Asia.

Kratos will help address Kacific’s HTS gateway infrastructure needs by designing and building a state-of-art Ka-band multi-site gateway solution for Kacific-1. Kratos’ gateway solutions are pre-configured in a secure and controlled off-site environment resulting in higher quality and faster time-to-market. The company’s industry-leading designs will optimize and protect Kacific’s investment by reducing complexity and risk, and accelerating market entry.

“Kacific sought a partner who could build a high-performance ground segment to enable us to deliver Ka-band HTS services across widely dispersed regions of the Pacific,” said Kacific CEO, Christian Patouraux. “We wanted an innovative solution which combined market leading products and best-of-breed industry tools and software with quality engineering services. The Kratos team were uniquely responsive to our design needs and our partnership marks another big milestone in our preparations to launch the Kacific-1 satellite.”

The next generation of HTS satellites promises new revenue and service opportunities for satellite operators, but are also driving important changes on the ground since current ground infrastructure is designed and optimized for traditional satellite operations. HTS satellite spot beams deliver high-bandwidth services to particular locations, causing many operators to re-think established ground station needs and designs. Kratos is leading this evolution by offering pre-configured and integrated HTS gateway solutions that enable satellite operators to maximize their HTS business model investment by reducing costs and improving time-to-market.

The Kacific contract award is for a multi-site gateway solution that will additionally include Kratos’ high-performance antennas and RF equipment, as well as several Kratos complementary ground system products, including the Compass® monitoring and control system; Monics® for carrier and spectrum monitoring; and SpectralNet™ RF-over-IP inter-facility links. The solution will be integrated at Kratos’ facility, and installed at various locations in the Pacific rim, with control equipment centralized in Kacific’s Network Operations Centre

“Satellite operators face a number of challenges when deploying HTS networks including the unique demands of implementing an HTS ground infrastructure suitable for initial operations, but designed for scalability as business requirements evolve,” said James Kramer, Kratos Senior Vice President. “We appreciate the confidence that Kacific has shown in Kratos to capitalize on their investment with a flexible, high quality multi-site solution that will support their business model now and in the years to come.”

Kacific appoints Brandon Seir to head broadband marketing of products as satellite launch looms

Kacific Broadband Satellites has appointed Brandon Seir as Vice President, Sales and Marketing – Asia & International Carriers.

He is a marketing, sales and strategic planning specialist with over a decade of experience working in leading international telecommunications, internet service providers and digital technology companies.

He spent 11 years over two periods with Roshan (Telecom Development Company), a subsidiary of AT&T, Talia Sonora & Monaco Telecom a GSM cellular provider with over 7.9M customers, initially as Director Sales, and then Chief Commercial Officer. Prior to that he was Director International Business Development for a Singaporean company, Technobiz Equipment, providing enterprise payments solutions to telecom operators, banks, internet and utility service providers.

In his role with Kacific Brandon is responsible for overseeing the development and introduction of the company’s complete range of satellite broadband products and service offerings leading up to the launch of Kacific1 in 2019. He is also responsible for sales of dynamic solutions to international carriers, ISPs and other service providers in Myanmar, Malaysia, Philippines, Guam, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Timor Leste, Nepal, Brunei and Fiji.

Brandon holds an MBA from the University of Liverpool and a BBA from Tashkent State University.