A High-End Global Satcom Presence
The marine satellite communication business has many earmarks suggesting it is set to expand rapidly, with a recent run of corporate consolidations and a seemingly endless offering of new products and services designed to emulate the speed and reliability of landbased services at sea.
Marine industry usage of communication services, particularly for data transmission and internet access, is embarked 011 much of the same growth curve as land-based services, as ship owners and operators are using advanced systems to meet the requirements of new security mandates, to make operations more safe and efficient. as well as to help lure and retain crews by boosting morale.
CapRock Communications, a major player in the energy and offshore market for more than two decades, has doggedly pursued additional opportunities in the maritime marketplace, and has emerged as a global presence.
While admitting that the competition in this sector is fierce. David Myers. Vice President of Global Marketing, said the company differentiates itself by providing a truly ruggedized. reliable and high-end turnkey satellite communications solution, backed with company trained and maintained service around the globe. In addition, the market for seamless satcom services is growing rapidly, a trend that is not likely to end anytime soon, with increased broadband demands driven by the need for high-end video conferencing, not to mention the Homeland Security/Counter terrorism applications. which are still under development and could include any number of different measures for the full-time, real-time tracking of cargo.
Using an IP-based satellite network that converges voice, video and data, CapRock Communications delivers reliable communications to the harshest and most remote environments all over the world. According Myers, the company has been steadfast over the last few years to make the moves that are critical to the company's future, systematically expanding its reliable coverage and service capabilities to customers around the globe in some of the world's harshest and most remote locations. Some of these include: Acquisition: With the acquisition of Indonesia-based Telematika Java Duta, CapRock continues this expansion and provides increased services to energy exploration, maritime, construction, mining, forestry and government customers across Southeast Asia and the South Pacific. This was the capstone acquisition for the company as it rounded out CapRock's privately owned and operated telecommunications infrastructure, which also includes international teleports and operations centers in Houston; Aberdeen. Scotland; and Macae, Brazil.
New Facilities: CapRock, with the support of owners The Riverside Company and Houston-based Genesis Park, relocated its headquarters to a new 62,000- sq.-ft. facility on 6.5 acres in Houston. Its new HQ features room for an increased number of satellite hub earth stations and an advanced network operations center (NOC). With its network management capabilities. CapRock's NOC monitors, manages and provisions customer networks around the globe 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Alliance: CapRock and ViaSat Inc.
formed a global alliance that supports CapRock's continuing initiative to supply its customers with reliable, flexible and feature-rich satellite communications services. In addition. CapRock now serves as the exclusive oil and gas industry partner to ViaSat's VSAT Networks division. The alliance enables ViaSat to leverage CapRock's global network, reputation for reliability and industry relationships.
According to Myers, another key plank in the commercial maritime expansion was the deal to provide satellite services to Subsea 7. The long-term multi-million dollar agreement with Subsea 7 provides for worldwide data and voice communications services on CapRock's global network. The contract is a milestone in CapRock's multi-year plan to expand its presence beyond the Gulf of Mexico, following its customers around the world with turnkey communications. CapRock will provides global interconnectivity via satellite for the Subsea 7 fleet of ships, which offer construction. diving. ROV/survey and pipelay services to customers who operate in harsh and remote marine environments all over the world. "Working from a ship for any length of time is considerably more efficient with reliable broadband communications to the outside world." said Subsea 7 Global IT Manager Anders From. "We chose CapRock Communications based on their track record of reliability and their ability to demonstrate significant savings. They gave us a system with unparalleled quality, creating value for our customers and employees who can easily work from any vessel in the Subsea 7 fleet with communications tailored to their project needs." CapRock will provides both dedicated and Bandwidth-on-Demand connectivi- ty to enable flexible ship-to-ship and ship-to-shore communications for customers and crew aboard Subsea 7 ships.
CapRock's highly flexible network will allows voice and high-speed data connections to be provisioned on an asneeded basis from CapRock's network operating center (NOC) in Scotland, providing dedicated lines to Subsea 7 and its customers.
Another significant deal was renewing its satcom services deal with drilling giant Transocean. CapRock has been providing Transocean's communications services successfully for nearly a decade, and the drilling company decided to extend the agreement for an additional four years. CapRock will migrate Transocean's network to the fully managed CapRock IPxpress network. With this network. Transocean will experience the benefits of voice over IP (VoIP), which takes advantage of the efficiencies of Internet Protocol to deliver high-quality voice and data communications more efficiently and more costeffectively than traditional satellite telephony.