Eurobites: Sigfox rescued from receivership by Singapore's UnaBiz

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: OneWeb to use Indian rockets; Russia's beef with Apple; Ericsson goes trucking.

  • UnaBiz, a Singapore-based IoT service provider, has been appointed as the new owner of Sigfox, the French company which held grand ambitions of dominating the IoT sphere with its proprietary, non-cellular technology but which crashed into receivership in January following years of speculation about its future. UnaBiz, which says it will rehire 110 of Sigfox's existing 174 employees, is understood to have paid €25 million (US$27 million) for the company. Henri Bong, the co-founder and co-CEO of UnaBiz, said in a statement that his company would "definitely guarantee the French sovereignty of Sigfox." Sigfox was founded in 2010 and to date claims 75 affiliate operators around the globe, powering 20 million connected devices. But how will UnaBiz make Sigfox work when its previous owners couldn't? Well, the company says it will set up "a more durable and collaborative global ecosystem" with "new strategies and governance" being put in place to improve relations with with Sigfox's existing partners and support the company's long-term development. (See Sigfox looks over and out with insolvency filing and French Toast? Sigfox on Skid Row.)

  • OneWeb, the UK satellite broadband company co-owned by the UK government and Indian conglomerate Bharti Global, has agreed a deal that will see it using Indian rockets to send its hardware into space. As the BBC reports, the rockets belong to New Space India, which is the commercial arm of India's national space agency. OneWeb already uses the services of the Elon Musk-owned SpaceX, which it was forced to turn to after its deal with the Russian space agency crumbled in the wake of Putin's invasion of Ukraine. (See Eurobites: OneWeb turns to SpaceX as Russian rocket deal misfires.)

  • Russia's antitrust regulator has been given the green light by a Moscow court to open a case against Apple relating to the US giant's App Store. As Reuters reports, Russia's Federal Anti-Monopoly Service (FAS) began the case against Apple in October, accusing it of preventing app developers from telling customers about alternative payment options when using the App Store. In a separate case, law firm Chernyshov, Lukoyanov & Partners said this week that it was preparing a suit against Apple for what it alleged was a violation of Russian consumers' rights after the company restricted the use of Apple Pay following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

  • XtndNet, which describes itself as the "UK's newest ISP," is using the forthcoming Connected North event in Manchester (April 25-26) to launch a hybrid satellite Internet service that it says guarantees reliable connectivity for "places left behind by traditional provider[s]." One element of the company's offer is what it calls a "12 Gb Space Superhighway backed by a leading satellite broadband provider."

  • A new Ericsson report into the connected trucks market details how the "Amazon Effect" has forced logistics companies to up their game in terms of telematics and the use of the data the technology generates. The report looked at how Orange Belgium has been working with fleet management company ZF Transics, equipping the trucks with eSIMs to enable global roaming connectivity to enable ZF to manage long-haul deliveries.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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