Elon Musk’s SpaceX has registered a fully owned subsidiary in India called Starlink Satellite Communications Private Limited. The company lists Starlink country director Sanjay Bhargava and Anand Prasad as signatories.
The company has Paid Up Capital of INR 1 lakh, which might go higher in the future.
Sanjay Bhargava, country director for Starlink, announced in a Linkedin post that Elon Musk’s SpaceX has registered a fully owned subsidiary called Starlink Satellite Communications Private Limited.
The registration of a legal entity in the country is probably one step in the direction of resolving that issue and will allow the company to start applying for licenses and open bank accounts etc.
The company said that Starlink would “carry on the business of telecommunication services including satellite broadband internet services, content storage and streaming, multi-media communication, among others.”
The development comes a few days after Elon Musk praised Sanjay Bhargava. “Sanjay deserves a lot of credit for making X/PayPal succeed. Now helping SpaceX serve rural communities in India. Much respect,” he tweeted.
In one of his previous LinkedIn posts, Bhargava had said that SpaceX will be focusing on ten rural Lok Sabha constituencies initially.
In 2019, SpaceX launched its first ‘constellation’ of low-earth orbit (LEO) satellites which were designed to deliver high-speed low-latency internet to remote regions which can access it using Starlink terminals.
Unlike regular satellites that orbit around 36,000 kilometres above the earth, LEO satellites orbit between 500 and 2000 km, meaning that an LEO internet connection is much faster than regular satellite internet. This technology makes it possible for people living in remote regions to access almost broadband speed internet without laying down the expensive network cable infrastructure.
Since then, the company has launched more than 1,429 operational satellites and aims to create a ‘mega-constellation’ of 30,000 satellites that will bring high-speed internet to remote regions in the world. Starlink currently services around 14 countries including the United Kingdom, France, the Netherlands, Germany, and Portugal with license applications pending elsewhere.
Earlier this year, SpaceX had hit regulatory hurdles while rolling out the beta-testing of its Starlink services in India, when the Broadband India Forum (BIF), a policy forum consisting of ISPs and industry giants including Facebook, Google, and ACT objected to it.
The BIF argued that SpaceX did not have the license or authorisation of any kind to offer internet services in India.