The UK space sector has reached an “inflection point,” with a new focus on national programmes, according to Inmarsat’s Vice President Nick Shave.
The company is the biggest UK headquartered company within the space sector, providing satellite communications around the world to governments, maritime users, aviation, airlines, and enterprise customers. Inmarsat, which has 40 years experience in the sector, has 1,00 people employed at its London headquarters and another 1,000 people based across the globe.
Ninety-five per cent of the company’s £1.2 billion turnover is export and the company works with an “ecosytem” of both UK and global partners.
Balancing act for space sector
Nick Shave, Vice President, Strategic Programmes, explained: “I think it’s a really interesting time in the UK space sector. I’d argue we’re at an inflection point, because we’ve gone through Brexit which has been a big thing in the press and everywhere else for many years. We’ve been focused a lot on the European Space Agency, and also some military programmes like Skynet 5 for example, and we’re looking now at more national capabilities.”
“We’ve got things like launch happening, which is a really exciting programme and we need to think about this from a national perspective. How do we build those national programmes so that we can balance the European Space Agency, other international partners, with some national capability programmes which the government needs, and the industry needs and also with the military and government programmes as well?”