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Telesat and Government of Canada agree to terms on C$2.14 billion loan in support of Telesat Lightspeed

Telesat and Government of Canada agree to terms on C$2.14 billion loan in support of Telesat Lightspeed

Telesat announced that on March 28, 2024, Telesat received a letter from Canada’s Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry regarding an investment in Telesat Lightspeed. The letter states that, following several months of negotiations between Telesat and federal officials, the Government of Canada (GoC) is prepared to invest C$2.14 billion in Telesat Lightspeed by way of a loan to Telesat LEO Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Telesat, that is developing and will own and operate the highly advanced Telesat Lightspeed Low Earth Orbit (LEO) global broadband satellite constellation.


The loan will carry a floating interest rate that is 4.75% above the Canadian Overnight Repo Rate Average (CORRA) with a 15-year maturity. Interest is payable in-kind during the Telesat Lightspeed construction period, followed by a 10-year sculpted amortization. Furthermore, Telesat LEO Inc. will provide the GoC with warrants for 10% of the common shares of Telesat LEO based upon an equity valuation for Telesat LEO of US$3 billion.


“Telesat Lightspeed is a highly innovative and disruptive global broadband network and the largest space program in Canada’s long and distinguished history as a space faring nation,” said Dan Goldberg, Telesat’s President and CEO. “I am delighted with the engagement we have had with the Government of Canada on this flagship program, which will help bridge the global digital divide, create and sustain thousands of high-quality jobs in Canada, spur domestic innovation, investment and exports, and ensure that Canada is at the forefront of the rapidly growing New Space Economy. The Government of Canada has been a strong supporter of the Telesat Lightspeed program and we applaud their leadership and foresight.”


Goldberg added: “We estimate that, in addition to the roughly US$2 billion of capital cost savings, we will realize roughly US$750 million of savings in reduced borrowing costs relative to the original Telesat Lightspeed program. Telesat Lightspeed will revolutionize broadband connectivity for enterprise and government users and represents a highly compelling growth and value creation opportunity for Telesat and its stakeholders.”


The GoC investment is subject to certain conditions, including the entry of definitive documentation with the GoC and Telesat’s other financing sources to the GoC’s satisfaction.


For further information visit:  www.telesat.com

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