RealTime IT News

eSat Completes Reality Check

Broadband service provider eSAT Inc. recently narrowed its operational focus in order to make its backbone in the sky a working reality.

The satellite service divested its interest in the e-commerce firm i-xposure Inc. while completing the acquisition of PacificNet Inc. and its subsidiary InterWireless Inc.

PacificNet is a managed access provider of traditional Internet services, including digital subscriber line connectivity, Web hosting services, and high-speed collocation services.

InterWireless acts as a wireless last mile solution to deliver Internet access and broadband fixed wireless services.

Basically the acquisitions added Internet management capabilities and last mile wireless services to eSat's future product mix.

Michael Palmer, eSat chief executive officer said the deals allowed the firm to focus on building its satellite-based infrastructure and develop its wholesale Internet transport unit.

"We achieved solid growth in revenues while effectively managing our operating expenses in consideration of the substantial acquisition related to PacificNet and InterWireless," Palmer said. "The company is now in a strong position to achieve its overall goal of becoming a leading provider of wireless and network management solutions."

The company is also in the process of testing its satellite systems in Europe and Asia. By acquiring PacificNet and InterWireless, eSat bought the brains for its satellite-fueled backbone.

Mark Basile, eSat's chief financial officer, said that the firm needed to build a back office that could support reselling broadband and fixed wireless access to Internet service providers.

"The acquired services will provide us a uniform platform that can effectively serve the growing global demand for high-speed, cost-effective Internet access," Basile said. "Selling services to ISPs required that we invest in software to build a wholesale service."

eSat also moved to patent the unique technology that links-up its geo-synchronous satellite system designed to deliver one-hop hub connectivity. When a single satellite can cover a broadband footprint capable of delivering high-speed services to a continent, building each point of linkage is no small feat.

Because eSat is a pioneer of satellite-based systems services, it's not entirely clear what variety of voice and data transport services its network will be able to facilitate. Basile said that in two years 80 percent of its revenue would come from services not yet on the market.

"We're planning on providing 'channel casting' as a featured service to broadcast Internet data to specific locations and not to the general public," Basile said. "Beyond reselling broadband access to ISPs, we're also developing voice over IP and Virtual Private Network services. What other services we will offer remains to be seen."

The backbone in the sky will eventually be capable of delivering 80 megabit per second upstream rates and 80 gigabit per second downstream speeds blind to the global terrain it connects.

Palmer said that looking ahead, eSat plans to concentrate its efforts on core competencies that include bandwidth management and wireless services.

"The technologies have been designed to seamlessly integrate together, providing customers with a turnkey wireless and network management solution with long haul and last mile delivery," Palmer said.

"We believe that these segments of our business will afford us the highest growth potential and ultimately lead us to our overall goal of becoming the single source for global connectivity solutions," Palmer added.

eSAT remains relatively untethered in its goal to provide secure, global com