Ongoing Expansion Supports Growing Number of Yachting and Oil and Gas Industry Customers in Southern Florida, the Caribbean, Mexico, and Central America.
Staying ahead of the bandwidth demands for its rapidly growing customer base, KVH Industries, Inc., (Nasdaq:KVHI) has just doubled the capacity of its mini-VSAT Broadband(SM) network in the busy Caribbean region. The capacity increase was provided as part of the ongoing global network upgrade involving deployment of Variable Coding, Spreading, and Modulation (VCSM) technology provided by ViaSat, Inc., (Nasdaq:VSAT), KVH's partner in the mini-VSAT Broadband network. This was the second major upgrade to the mini-VSAT Broadband network in less than a month, following the recently announced improvements that increased the capacity in Europe by more than 60%.
"The Caribbean region upgrade is part of our planned expansion to support the increased demand of our rapidly growing customer base," explained Brent Bruun, Executive Vice President of KVH's Mobile Broadband Group. "We are rolling out a new version of our modulation technology that enables us to handle transmissions much more efficiently, thereby increasing the amount of data that our network can carry. Thanks to our end-to-end design approach, we are able to upgrade the software in our large population of fielded TracPhone(R) systems over the air, providing a future-proof solution that we continue to improve as we add new features and network enhancements."
Since launching the mini-VSAT Broadband network in 2007, KVH has become one of the world's leading providers of maritime VSAT service. KVH's service differs from competing maritime VSAT services in its use of spread spectrum technology, which enables the use of antennas that are 85% smaller than competing products while still providing fast, high quality service. KVH is also the only maritime satellite service company that designs and manufactures the onboard terminals, owns and operates the satellite service network, and provides round-the-clock global after-sale support providing customers with a total end-to-end solution. Smaller antennas and fully integrated belowdecks equipment are less costly and faster and easier to install, offering significant savings to companies deploying broadband technology to a fleet of vessels.
KVH's business model is another key part of the company's growth strategy. Rather than investing in its own satellites, the company leverages the readily available commercial FSS satellite capacity covering the world's oceans, provided by industry leaders like Intelsat, Eutelsat, SES, and SkyPerfect JSAT. Currently, the mini-VSAT Broadband network uses 17 leased transponders to cover the globe with a unique hybrid network including both C-band and Ku-band coverage. KVH's unique 1 meter, dual-mode TracPhone V11 antenna, the world's only global 1 meter maritime VSAT solution, seamlessly switches among C- and Ku-band frequencies as easily as the 60 cm TracPhone V7-IP antennas and 37 cm TracPhone V3 antennas switch among Ku-band satellites. As KVH's customer base grows, the company will lease additional capacity covering exactly the areas of the world where it is needed. All of the company's TracPhone systems in the field can be dynamically updated to use new capacity as it comes online, ensuring continued delivery of high-quality service.
"KVH supports a large number of oil-and-gas industry customers in the Caribbean region, as well as a large number of yachts, a population that grows with the seasonal migration to southern Florida and the islands from the northern U.S., Canada, and the Mediterranean during the winter," said Mr. Bruun. "Our customers enjoy the highest quality satellite service available, with downloads as fast as 4 Mbps and uploads as fast as 1 Mbps, as well as crystal clear Voice over IP (VoIP) telephone lines with optimized service and prioritization of applications. The addition of this new capacity in the Caribbean in time for the busy winter season is a perfect example of how we actively monitor and manage our mini-VSAT Broadband network to ensure we are delivering the speeds and quality of service our customers expect."
With more than 2,500 onboard terminals sold, mini-VSAT Broadband service is the world's fastest growing, most popular maritime VSAT solution, according to three independent industry research reports published in 2012 by Euroconsult, NSR, and Comsys.