A leading Asian satellite operator and integrated satellite provider, Thaicom, has laid out its plan to expand its business by maximizing the usage of its satellite license to provide high-tech services for users.
Mr. Patompob Suwansiri, Chief Executive Officer of Thai-listed Thaicom Public Company Limited (SET: THCOM), told Kaohoon International that the company recently won the bidding of two satellite packages which includes two orbital slots. A 119.5 degree slot is the license Thaicom is focusing on. It is expected to have an investment value of around 15 billion baht, consisting of two small satellites and one large satellite.
The CEO pointed out that the investment value of this 119.5 orbital slot is the same amount of investment for its broadband satellite in 2005, but with a much bigger capacity of 120 gigabytes per second (gbps), compared to 40 gbps of the one in 2005.
The reason that Thaicom made it possible to achieve three times the capacity with the same investment cost as in 2005 is mainly due to the advanced technology that gives more efficiency and flexibility to the company.
Mr. Suwansiri said that there is a possibility that the service fee will be reduced amid rising consumption due to lower cost, but the fact that consumers are looking for more bandwidth nowadays, leading to the company’s growth should outshine discount prices.
The CEO revealed that with the new satellites, the company is looking to expand domestically and internationally in the market that the company has experienced with.
India is one of the main targets for Thaicom. The company has worked with the Indian government and state-owned enterprises for more than 15 years. Considering the terrain and its population, which are appropriate for satellite services. Satellite services would have the advantage of reaching remote areas for education and telemedicine.
Traditionally, Thaicom only provides satellite services, but the company is moving forward to what it’s called a ‘space tech’, which is everything that has to do with space. The company has initiated the use of satellite data and imaging. This could help companies in the area that is the most trending in recent years; carbon credit.
Mr. Suwansiri said that Thaicom can use satellites to calculate carbon absorption in the forest area. This will give companies easy access to carbon data that could be used to offset pollution that their other businesses create.
Currently, Thaicom is processing to get this methodology verified internationally, and once it is completed, companies can use this as a trade to carbon credit.
The partnership with US-listed Globalstar is also one of the aspects that could take Thaicom to expand further. Globalstar is a low-earth orbit constellation, which is similar to Starlink that is operated by Elon Musk’s SpaceX, but the niche is that Global Star provides IoT services. One of the projects that Thaicom is working on with Globalstar is providing a life vest for people travelling in the sea or forest that will provide location signals to officials in case of emergency and there is an emergency button when needed as well.
This partnership with Globalstar will allow Thaicom to act as the latter’s service provider in Thailand. The company is in the middle of a construction of a gateway to provide the service in the kingdom, which is expected to be completed by the second quarter of this year and the full service can start in the second half.
In addition, the CEO noted that the most important step is that the company has secured the aforementioned two orbital slots and affirmed that investors can expect the same success of businesses for the last 30 years in the next 20 years at least. This acquisition will provide opportunities for broadband services both domestically and internationally. Moreover, the business on ‘space tech’ is what the company is very keen to work on to lay out future growth in the long term.