I would like to wish all of the readers and the satellite community a happy New Year. We wish you all the best for the year ahead and look forward to hopefully seeing you all a bit more.
Via Satellite is kicking off 2022 with a bang. I was lucky enough to sit down with Viasat Chairman Mark Dankberg and Inmarsat CEO Rajeev Suri to talk about the blockbuster $7 billion+ deal announced last November which saw Viasat acquire Inmarsat in one of the biggest deals in satellite in recent memory. The interview gives a fascinating insight into what went on behind the scenes and why Viasat is completely convinced this is a fantastic deal for the operator. The deal in many ways could set the tone for 2022.
As many of you know, I am based in the United Kingdom. One of the things I am most excited about this year is seeing potentially a rocket launched from Cornwall, something I just could not have imagined a few years ago. What is exciting is how the ability to launch rockets is taking us beyond French Guiana, Kazakhstan and the U.S. We have an article from freelancer Anne Wainscott Sargent about smallsat launchers in development around the world, and what progress they hope to make in 2022.
This edition also puts the spotlight on the African satellite market and looks at the potential opportunities for satellite players here. It remains a vibrant market with satellite having an ever-increasing role in reducing digital divides. Media and consulting company Space in Africa put together a report for Via Satellite on this topic.
I would also like to flag some exciting news for our March edition (which will be distributed at SATELLITE). We are close to finalizing our nominees for Satellite Executive of the Year (SEOTY) and Satellite Technology of the Year (STOTY) awards. We will also be revealing our next 10 hottest companies in satellite, which is one of the most popular features of the year.
As we head into 2022, we once again say a big thank you for all of your support. It is such a dynamic community to serve and we look forward to what we think will be another pivotal and amazing year in the industry. All the best.