Sep 17, 2019
In this Making Leaders interview conducted at the Hall of Fame Celebration, we hear from Greg Wyler, Founder and Executive Chairman of OneWeb and one of the three inductees to the Space & Satellite Hall of Fame in 2019. Greg founded O3B Networks, in partnership with Liberty Global, in 2007 with the goal of unlocking MEO orbit to deliver Internet to remote areas without the need for laying fiber. By 2016, O3B had a firm backlog of $350 million with more than $100 million in current-year revenue, and SES exercised its option to purchase the company, whose markets had grown to include maritime, mobility, energy and government based on the success of its MEO fleet architecture.
After the success of his first company, Greg moved on to an even more ambitious venture: creating a network of hundreds of LEO satellites to deliver low-latency, high-speed Internet to remote areas. He founded OneWeb in 2012 with investment support from Softbank, Bharti, Hughes, Intelsat, Virgin Group, Qualcomm, Airbus, Grupo Salinas, Maxar, and Coca-Cola with the vision of connecting all the unconnected schools of the world and providing Internet to fuel economic growth, improve education and social development, advance gender equality and make healthcare more accessible across the globe. To make its vision a reality, OneWeb needed to develop mass-production techniques and a global supply chain capable of assembling 15 satellites per week to launch a 1980-satellite constellation. OneWeb has raised more than $3.4bn to date and the company’s first launch was a success that has been a major milestone for the industry as a proof-of-concept for the viability of LEO constellations.