[SatNews] Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd. (NASDAQ, TASE: GILT) has revealed that Peru's Fitel (Fondo de Inversion en Telecomunicaciones / Telecommunications Investment Fund) has awarded a $285 million regional telecommunications infrastructure project to Gilat—this is the largest contract ever won by the company since its inception.
Fitel's regional initiative represents the complementary phase of the Peruvian National Fiber Backbone project, aimed to connect rural villages to broadband services. Within the framework of this phase, Gilat won the bids for three regional projects—in Huancavelica, Ayacucho and Apurimac. These projects are BOT (Built, Operate and Transfer). The fiber-optic Transport networks will be built, operated for one year and then transferred to the Ministry, while the Access networks based on wireless technologies will be operated for 10 years before being transferred to the Ministry. In the frame of the Access network operation obligations, Gilat will connect about 600 public institutions to broadband services.
In addition to the bids, Gilat expects additional revenues to be generated by enabling cellular carriers to acquire network capacity to address the growing needs for voice, data, and internet in these regions. Gilat has demonstrated, with the successful rollout of the Integracion Amazonica Loreto (IAL) project in 2014, among many others in the region, that it has the required expertise to efficiently deploy large-scale network infrastructure in the most remote, mountainous and jungle areas of Peru.
Erez Antebi, CEO of Gilat Satellite Networks, said, "Gilat's experience in challenging terrain and its ability to overcome operational obstacles are key to achieving the government objective of connecting rural villages to broadband services. We will bring high-quality communications services to the most remote areas of Peru, while contributing to the advancement of social services, education, economic development and employment in these regions. Gilat is committed to a fruitful collaboration with Fitel on this project as well as on future initiatives. Apart from the $285 million award, we expect this project to generate additional revenues for Gilat by enabling telecom and mobile operators to provide data services to the local population using the new infrastructure."