- Satellite Evolution Group
Viasat announces definitive agreement to acquire RigNet
Viasat Inc., a global communications company, today announced it entered into a definitive agreement to acquire RigNet, Inc. (NASDAQ: RNET), a leading provider of ultra-secure, intelligent networking solutions and specialized applications, in an all-stock transaction that values RigNet at an enterprise value of approximately $222 million based on Viasat’s share price as of the date of the agreement and RigNet’s net debt at September 30, 2020.
The acquisition will help to further accelerate Viasat’s strategy to provide high-quality, ubiquitous, affordable broadband connectivity and communications to the hardest-to-reach locations around the globe. RigNet provides premier, global end-to-end, secure managed communications service and installation capabilities, along with digital transformation solutions, which will enable Viasat to quickly expand into new adjacent industries, including: energy, shipping, maritime, mining and additional enterprises.
Rick Baldridge, Viasat’s president and CEO commented, “With the acquisition of RigNet, we are accelerating the diversification of our connectivity portfolio and establishing a global foundation for expansion of our remote enterprise service offerings. RigNet’s successful track record, global footprint, deep customer relationships and emerging technology expertise in areas like machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) make this transaction an ideal fit as we launch our integrated global broadband platform. The transaction is accretive to cashflow, and is expected to improve our leverage position as well as offer multiple opportunities for expansion and performance upside beyond RigNet’s robust energy services business. We’re looking forward to welcoming the RigNet team to the Viasat family post-closing.”
“There is a powerful alignment between RigNet and Viasat given our shared mission to provide fast, reliable coverage, anywhere customers require it,” said Steven Pickett, president and CEO, RigNet. “We have broad experience integrating broadband connectivity and networking capabilities in the most challenging environments—gained from our global deployment of more than 1,200 onshore and offshore sites and 11,000 Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) sites. This combination also represents an outstanding opportunity for us to accelerate both the investment in and the adoption of our digital transformation solutions more rapidly outside of our core oil & gas vertical. Our customers are demanding more enhanced communications solutions, and joining forces with Viasat—a recognized leader in satellite broadband connectivity—will enable us to serve them better.”
Industry expansion opportunities
Acquiring RigNet will give Viasat direct access to over 650 customers and expand and diversify Viasat’s commercial connectivity portfolio, providing Viasat an opportunity to more quickly enter adjacent industries. For example, by combining the strong gains in bandwidth efficiencies expected from the impending ViaSat-3 constellation and RigNet’s portfolio of services, Viasat will become a leading vertically-integrated energy communications provider with deep domain and customer expertise.
Complementary digital transformation toolset
Acquiring RigNet will give Viasat access to complementary core technology and services, including RigNet’s digital transformation toolset, which includes its end-to-end managed communications and connectivity service capabilities, like SD-WAN; the Cyphre™ cybersecurity product-line; its large-scale applications and IIoT offering; and the Intelie Live™ real-time machine learning and AI analytics platform. Viasat expects to leverage and combine RigNet’s digital transformation solutions, global enterprise experience, support infrastructure and back office systems to expand into new global services.
With over 650 employees, RigNet has a strong global support infrastructure and operations foundation with more than 50% of its employees overseas. RigNet’s international presence aligns with Viasat’s expanding global operations, enabling Viasat to find additional value and business complements for its ViaSat-3 globalization efforts.
Viasat intends to incorporate RigNet into its Global Enterprise and Mobility business unit, led by President Jimmy Dodd, which will provide further complementary capabilities and support synergies to Viasat’s existing mobility businesses. The RigNet team operates from its headquarters in Houston, Texas; management is expected to stay on to provide leadership, in-depth industry knowledge and customer relationship support.
Under the terms of the agreement, RigNet stockholders will receive 0.1845 shares of Viasat common stock for each share of RigNet common stock, which represents a 17.9% premium based on the 20-day volume-weighted average prices of Viasat and RigNet. The transaction represents an enterprise value for RigNet of approximately $222 million, consisting of approximately $130 million in RigNet equity value, based on the closing price of Viasat common stock as of the date of the agreement and the assumption of approximately $92 million in RigNet debt, net of cash, at September 30, 2020. The transaction is expected to close by mid-calendar year 2021, subject to the satisfaction of regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.
Viasat has also entered into a support agreement with certain stockholders of RigNet, under which such stockholders have agreed to vote all of their RigNet shares in favor of the transaction at the special meeting of RigNet stockholders to be held in connection with the transaction, subject to certain terms and conditions. The RigNet shares subject to the agreement represent approximately 25% of the current outstanding voting power of the RigNet common stock.
LionTree Advisors LLC and Latham & Watkins LLP acted as Viasat’s financial and legal advisors, respectively. RigNet’s financial and legal advisors in the transaction are Lazard Middle Market LLC and Baker Botts LLP, respectively.
Viasat and RigNet will host a conference call and webcast for investors at 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time (5:30 a.m. Pacific Time) on December 21, 2020, with Baldridge and Pickett to discuss the transaction. The call may be accessed live by dialing (877) 640-9809 in the U.S., or (914) 495-8528 for international callers, using the conference ID: 9486405. Interested parties may also listen to a simultaneous webcast of the conference call by accessing the webcast link on Viasat’s website at http://investors.viasat.com in the Investors – Events & Presentations section. A replay of the conference call will be made available from 11:30 a.m. Eastern Time on Monday, December 21, until 11:30 a.m. Eastern Time on Tuesday, December 22. To access the replay, please dial: (855) 859-2056 in the U.S. and (404) 537-3406 internationally, and enter the conference ID: 9486405. The webcast will be archived and available on the Viasat investor relations website for approximately one month immediately following the conference call.