AST SpaceMobile Shares Boosted with $100M Verizon Investment for Space-Based Connectivity

AST SpaceMobile and Verizon Announce Strategic Partnership (Photo: Business Wire)

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Insider Brief:

  • AST SpaceMobile Inc.’s shares climbed up to 46% after Verizon Communications Inc. announced a $100 million investment in the satellite design and manufacturing company.
  • AST’s stock peaked at $7.80 on the day the deal was announced.
  • This follows a similar deal AST secured with AT&T only two weeks ago that positioned the Midland, Texas-based company to offer 100% coverage of the continental US through its future satellite system
  • These recent partnerships signify a strategic move for Verizon and AT&T, who typically compete directly, as they now collaborate with AST to rival Elon Musk’s SpaceX.

 

AST SpaceMobile Inc.’s shares climbed up to 46% after Verizon Communications Inc. announced a $100 million investment in the satellite design and manufacturing company. This partnership aims to enhance wireless connectivity from space.

This follows a similar deal AST secured with AT&T only two weeks ago that positioned the Midland, Texas-based company to offer 100% coverage of the continental US through its future satellite system as reported by BNN Bloomberg. The system will utilize the radio frequencies allocated to Verizon and AT&T by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

These recent partnerships signify a strategic move for Verizon and AT&T, who typically compete directly, as they now collaborate with AST to rival Elon Musk’s SpaceX. SpaceX partnered with T-Mobile US Inc. in 2022 to provide similar services.

On the announcement day, AST’s stock peaked at $7.80. However, Verizon and AT&T shares remained largely unchanged. Abel Avellan, founder and CEO of AST, emphasized that this collaboration aims to eliminate cellular dead zones and provide connectivity to remote regions through space-based technology.

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Chris Brown, head of network for AT&T, discussed how the partnerships are crucial for expanding space-based wireless services. “With AST SpaceMobile and additional mobile operators, we can offer more spectrum and coverage, improving service capabilities,” he stated. Brown underscored that these efforts are shaping the future of connectivity globally.

AST is one of the few companies aiming to deliver “direct-to-cell” connectivity using low-orbit satellites. SpaceX’s Starlink system, with approximately 6,000 satellites, is a major competitor in this market. Starlink and T-Mobile have already begun testing their service with government-regulated radio frequencies.

Verizon’s investment includes $65 million in commercial prepayments, subject to conditions, and an additional $35 million in convertible notes. AST launched its 693-square-foot satellite, BlueWalker 3, on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket in 2022. The company plans to launch a network of 168 low-Earth orbit satellites, with the first five commercial satellites scheduled for shipment to Florida this summer.

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