Thai firm invests $15M for broadband facility in Manila


Posted at Nov 07 2008 10:49 AM | Updated as of Nov 07 2008 06:51 PM

A commercial satellite operator from Thailand has invested $15 million for its facility in Manila that will offer broadband Internet services, mainly in rural areas in the Philippines.
Thaicom Public Co. Ltd., Asia's leading commercial satellite operator that created the IPStar broadband satellite system, has inaugurated its Manila gateway, its 11th facility in the world. It tapped local firm We are IT Philippines Inc. (WIT) as its Philippine operator.
Jose Maddatu, chairman and president of WIT, said they are in talks with local telecommunications providers in the country for the lease of the facility in various provinces.
He said the IPStar broadband satellite system can cover as much as 80 percent of the Philippines and can provide broadband Internet services in schools and households located in the most remote parts of the country.
Thaicom also launched the new retail high-speed Internet package called IPStar Bigsky for the Philippine market starting at only $49 or P2,500 a month.  The package includes a compact satellite dish that would enable subscribers to hook up to the main satellite.
The Thai company and its local partner target government projects, schools, enterprises and households in the provinces.
"This archipelago consisting of over 7,000 islands makes IPStar an ideal solution to provide nationwide broadband services," said Dumrong Kasemset, executive chair of Thaicom.
Kasemset said they are also negotiating with other service providers to develop and expand the broadband market in the Philippines.
IPStar currently provides broadband satellite services in eight countries including Australia, Cambodia, China, Myanmar, New Zealand, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines.