The judging panel selected Inmarsat for the award for providing outstanding support to customers of its market-leading cockpit and cabin connectivity solutions during the global pandemic. Inmarsat was also praised for successfully continuing the rollout of its inflight connectivity solutions and starting an ambitious, fully-funded technology roadmap that began with the launch and commercial service introduction of the GX5 advanced satellite. Conceived, designed and procured principally to meet the future needs of aviation customers, GX5 delivers approximately twice the combined capacity of the entire GX satellite fleet (GX1-GX4) launched before it. Inmarsat’s technology roadmap will see seven further satellite launches by 2024: five in geostationary orbit – adding speed, capacity and resilience – and two in highly elliptical orbit, which will enable the world’s only commercial mobile broadband service for aircraft flying in higher elevations and across the Arctic.
Meanwhile, Inmarsat announced that Rajeev Suri, former Nokia CEO, will join the business and assume the role of CEO and become a director of Connect Bidco Limited, the holding company for Inmarsat. Suri’s most recent role was president and CEO of Nokia, a position he held for six years. Prior to that, he was the CEO of Nokia Siemens Networks for five years, a joint venture company that merged Nokia’s and Siemens’ networks businesses. Since stepping down in August 2020, Suri has worked in senior advisory roles with private equity firms Warburg Pincus and Apollo Global Management.
He has a record of accomplishments, including moving Nokia to one of the top two players in telecommunications infrastructure through both M&A and organic growth and doubling revenues during his 11 years of leadership. Suri led the consolidation of the network infrastructure sector from 10 players to three major players in just over a decade, leaving the overall industry much healthier. Suri most recently led Nokia’s leadership in 5G for communication service providers and successfully diversified Nokia into new business areas. He established an independent software business that became the leading telecom software business in the world, quadrupled the annual recurring revenue run rate of the patent licensing business and led a new foray into large enterprise networks with double digit revenue growth over the last several years. Rajeev will be based in the UK.
Andrew Sukawaty Inmarsat’s chairman, said: “The board is delighted to welcome Rajeev to Inmarsat and we look forward to working closely with him and with the existing Executive team. Rajeev’s experience will support Inmarsat’s future growth and we look forward to the business transitioning successfully to another capable leader.”
Suri said of his appointment, “I am very excited to join Inmarsat, and to work closely with such skilled people, at such an important moment for the company and the satellite communications industry as a whole. I have been very impressed by the capabilities and ambitions of the company and its partner community and wish to pay tribute to their ethos, drive and ingenuity. Together, they have established technology leadership in satellite mobility, underpinned by a unique understanding of the customer.”