The U.S. and its Allies are facing significant troop draw downs in Afghanistan. Potential massive spending cuts are looming in U.S. federal and state governments. Presumably the next conflict zones will lie in Asia. DoD procurement methods continue to constrain the cost-effective use of commercial SATCOM. New and continually more sophisticated technologies in intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance (ISR) are changing the marketplace. These and other changing user requirements and new technologies are driving a significant shift in XTAR’s market strategy.
Our approach to these changing market dynamics centers on how commercial X-band can most-effectively address current worldwide challenges in the context of the most current technologies available. What are its advantages, and where does it best fit? We believe our approach must remain focused on the end users’ needs and requirements with an emphasis on identifying users or applications which are best-served by X-band.
Our new strategy has resulted in a significant increase in our AISR business, an advanced application which is proving to be a significant force-enabler of today’s sophisticated warfighter. As the DoD and other agencies shifted from operatives on the ground to airborne ISR tactics, we evaluated XTAR’s infrastructure to ensure our service remained responsive to those applications. Among the modifications we implemented are repositioning our spot beams, updating our transponder matrix and working with commercial and government teleport operators to offer users more convenient and cost-effective options to access our space segment. As testimony to this new strategy, XTAR realized more than $8M in new AISR business alone in 2012.
Complementing WGS – “Use It Like You Own It”
Commercial X-band offers numerous advantages to potential WGS end users. Viewed from their perspective, commercial X-band complements, rather than competes with, WGS. It should therefore be viewed as a strong alternative asset for warfighters and users who either cannot gain access to WGS bandwidth or where no WGS coverage currently exists. XTAR provides “use-it-like-you-own-it” capacity through two key aspects: Non-Preemptibility and Operational Independence. Our non-preemptible service means that users are not beholden to a priority system that governs who gets access to bandwidth. Additionally, XTAR enables responsible government users the ability to manage the bandwidth they lease with a level of control similar to being an owner of that capacity. Terminals certified for use on WGS are automatically certified for use on XTAR, and the ability to move to and from WGS without having to purchase Ku-band equipment is an attractive financial benefit to using XTAR.
XTAR has the potential for rapid growth in 2013 and beyond. XTAR is working closely with its customers, integrator partners, and technology systems developers to address end user or applications needs and requirements. Understanding – and meeting – the needs of the end user is the ultimate goal of strengthening these relationships. Our recent changes in market strategy and embrace of new opportunities demonstrate that XTAR has indeed begun an exciting phase of development. The heritage of our business, commercial X-band communication, remains the heart of what we do: “Delivering X-band to the Power of X”.