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New CEO Appointed for UK Satellite Broadband ISP Avanti

Monday, February 5th, 2018 (9:53 am) - Score 1,185

London-based Satellite ISP Avanti Communications has appointed Kyle Whitehill to be its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO). The move comes ahead of their planned March 2018 launch of the new HYLAS 4 spacecraft that will offer “cost-effective and high-speed broadband” across Africa and Europe.

Kyle joins Avanti from his former position as CEO of the Liquid Telecom Group in South Africa. Prior to that Kyle was with Vodafone Group for almost 15 years, where he served as CEO of Vodafone Qatar, overseeing the successful launch of the country’s 4G+ network, as well as being CEO of Vodafone Ghana for three years and COO of Vodafone India.

The new CEO replaces former boss David Williams, who announced last summer that he was leaving the company after 17 years at the helm. A non-executive board director, Alan Harper, has been overseeing Avanti as an interim CEO and will now return to his previous role.

Kyle Whitehill said:

“I am delighted to be part of Avanti’s new beginning. As HYLAS 4 is launched, a new story will be written. There is great opportunity here. We are bringing much needed, secure and reliable broadband communications services to communities, governments and companies across Europe, Africa and the Middle East. In Africa, we will help transform a continent by bringing communications and opportunity to unserved communities.

I look forward to working with the team at Avanti and, with my contacts across these regions, to deliver great services to Avanti’s customers and great results for its investors.”

The operator recently announced revenue for Q3 2017 of $9.7m and EBITDA of $3.8m, with a period end cash balance of $90.0m and a period end backlog of $95.2m. Financing the new HYLAS 4 satellite has put a lot of pressure on Avanti, which is now banking on a successful launch to help steer it through difficult times.

On the bright side Avanti has just agreed a new partnership deal with Global Partnership for Education (GPE), which will use Hylas 4 to connect 1,000 rural schools across Africa to the internet. Apparently the marginalised schools will be able to get access for approximately $10 a day.

The connectivity itself will be delivered via Avanti’s Every Community Online (ECO) scheme, which provides schools and surrounding communities with WiFi access (fuelled via their Satellite).

Leave a Comment
4 Responses
  1. Avatar Patrick Cosgrove says:

    “. Apparently the marginalised schools will be able to get access for approximately $10 a day.”

    $10 a day is rather a lot of money for a marginalise school in Africa. What is meant by “marginalised”?

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      You would need to ask Avanti as it’s their wording. It’s also unclear whether $10 is the cost for the school and community coverage or only the former. Bit more info. about ECO here, although the website says the ‘C’ means ‘Child’ while Avanti say it means ‘Community’.

      https://artes.esa.int/news/eco-every-community-online

  2. Avatar Tim says:

    It is such a shame that so much money is spent on Satellite technology when it could be better spent on future-proof networks such as fibre.

    Then again Africa is extremely remote…

    1. Avatar Chris P says:

      Places with little to non fixed wire infrastructure are going wireless first as it’s cheaper and better than nothing. When you’re remote and need an internet connection you’d be grateful for 2 way satellite vs terrible dial up.

      Ofcourse xG is the great enabler for underdeveloped nations and is their equivalent of fibre.

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