Elon Musk-backed Starlink has registered its business in India as the SpaceX arm gears up to launch internet services in the country. A 100% owned subsidiary in India will allow the company to apply for licenses which it needs from the government before it can provide broadband and other satellite-based communication services.
“Pleased to share that SpaceX now has a 100 percent owned subsidiary in India,” country director for Starlink in India, Sanjay Bhargava, said in a LinkedIn post.
“We can now start applying for licenses, open bank accounts, etc,” said Bhargava, who according to his LinkedIn profile joined the company only in October.
Last month, Bhargava had said that the company was aiming to start broadband service in India from December 2022, with 2 lakh active terminals subject to permission from the government
“Our stretch target is to have 2,00,000 terminals active in India in December 2022. Actual numbers may be much lower than that or even zero if we do not get government approval but it is very unlikely that we will exceed 2,00,000,” Bhargava had said in a Linkedin post
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Bhargava said that the satellite communication (satcom) firm will initially focus on 10 rural Lok Sabha constituencies and had also indicated that he may hold discussions with government officials to work on enhancing broadband connectivity in the country.
Starlink is one of a growing number of companies launching small satellites as part of a low-Earth orbiting network to provide low-latency broadband internet services around the world. The services of the company will compete with that of Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea in broadband and it will be a direct competitor to Bharti Group-backed OneWeb.