LightSquared Grabs $265M, Gets Ready to Deploy Network
LightSquared grabbed the additional financing from "new and existing investors." The company is backed by Harbinger Capital Partners LP to the tune of a reported $3 billion and has already gathered an additional $2 billion in equity and debt financing.(See LightSquared Tees Up $586M Loan Deal and Report: LightSquared Mulling IPO.)
The would-be 4G wholesale provider will need all the money it can lay its hands on as it starts the massive undertaking of deploying a nationwide 4G network in the U.S. that will be bolstered with satellite coverage where LTE is not available.
LightSquared has a deal with Nokia Networks to supply the terrestrial LTE base stations. It is, however, working with AlcaLu on interfacing the satellite network with the 4G on the ground.
Reston, Va.-based LightSquared signed the deal with AlcaLu to develop its satellite base station sub-systems (SBSS) to connect with the earthbound network back in April, when it was known as SkyTerra. The operator is currently advertising for an SBSS Support and Operations Planner ahead of its launch.
PC World, meanwhile, reports that LightSquared is starting work on deploying LTE in the U.S. So far, the operator has only had test base stations up.
"We can begin to roll out the network without turning it on," said Martin Harriman, executive vice president of LightSquared, in an interview with the publication. "We will start deployments shortly, we have base stations in production, and ... our first devices are imminent."
Both the satellite and 4G portions of the network will go live at the same time in 2012.
— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile