Inmarsat Secures Ex-Im Backing for Global Xpress

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PARIS — Mobile satellite services operator Inmarsat on May 12 announced it had signed a loan agreement with the U.S. Export-Import bank providing for up to $700 million for its Global Xpress Ka-band satellite system.

London-based Inmarsat said the U.S. export-credit agency has agreed to a four-year drawdown that will be followed by an 8.5-year payback in equal installments at a fixed interest rate that was not disclosed.

Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems of El Segundo, Calif., is building three Global Xpress satellites for Inmarsat, making Global Xpress eligible for U.S. export-credit support. The satellites are scheduled to be ready for launch starting in 2013. A launch services provider has not yet been selected.

Conclusion of the agreement means that all three global mobile satellite service operators offering voice and data services have now benefited from export-credit aid. Globalstar of Covington, La., and Iridium Communications of McLean, Va., have both received financing from the French export-credit agency, Coface, for their second-generation constellations of low-orbiting satellites.

 

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