|Inmarsat CEO, Rupert Pearce, and MCN Vice President of Sales & Marketing, Mr. Song Zhen, signing an agreement for MCN to become a Global Xpress Value Added Reseller (GX VAR) in China in April 2015. Photo: Inmarsat
[Avionics Today 04-08-2016] Inmarsat has signed a Heads of Terms (HoT) agreement with Beijing Marine Communication and Navigation Company (MCN), which will lead to the creation of a joint venture to provide aircraft cabin and cockpit connectivity solutions in China’s fast-growing commercial aviation market.
The companies expect to sign the final agreement later this year.
Inmarsat would provide its Global Xpress (GX) Aviation and SwiftBroadband-Safety (SB-S) services through the joint venture. GX Aviation, the satellite operator’s broadband In-Flight Connectivity (IFC) solution, will launch this year enabling both passenger Wi-Fi and operational connectivity for aircraft that equip. Air China is set to trial GX Aviation this year.
SB-S is a flight deck communication platform that combines L-band satellite connectivity with advanced avionics, enabling airlines to meet the ICAO mandate for sub-15-minute tracking of all aircraft, Civil Aviation Authority of China (CAAC)’s four-minute mandate, Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) and Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) updates.
“China is one of the world’s fastest-growing commercial aviation markets and when the proposed joint venture with MCN is finalized, the new company would provide the country with access to the most advanced cockpit and cabin connectivity solutions available today and in the future,” said Leo Mondale, president of Inmarsat Aviation.