TOC business fair in Hamburg, Wednesday 15.06.2016. The team of Combined Transport is meeting ORBCOMM to understand how intermodal transportation in Europe can benefit from ORBCOMM’s IoT solutions. As a global leader in the end-to-end Machine-to-Machine infrastructure, ORBCOMM provides devices, networks, applications and support for loading unit visibility, remote control and analytic insight.
According to Mrs Rutherford (Vice President of Marketing), ORBCOMM’s strategy is to achieve growth for their European business, which includes entering into additional M2M and IoT vertical markets and expanding the multimodal tracking capabilities by introducing leading-edge M2M and IoT applications, offering customers a broad range of satellite and cellular connectivity options.
Before discussing the product offering and partner ecosystem in depth, a couple of figures to set a frame of ORBCOMM’s business activities. Total revenue in 2015 amounted to USD 178 Million with an adjusted EBITDA of USD 42.3 Million. ORBCOMM counts 1.6 Million subscribers to their services globally. Amongst 560 employees in 15 countries are 300 engineers, 45 services and 35 sales personnel. ORBCOMM has registered more than 100 patents, for example for the satellite technology OG2.
Frank Ribbe (Senior Sales Manger) explains that the satellite connectivity options of ORBCOMM enable connection even in areas with low cellular coverage. By leveraging the enhanced capabilities of ORBCOMM’s OG2 satellite network, the firm can reduce the time interval in delivering messages and data, or network latency, in almost all regions of Europe. The new OG2 services also increase the data rate and message size capabilities. On July 14, 2014, ORBCOMM launched six Generation 2 (“OG2”) satellites aboard a Space Exploration Corporation (“SpaceX”) Falcon 9 launch vehicle. On September 15, 2014, following an in-orbit testing period, the commercial service for the six OG2 satellites was initiated, which provide both M2M and IoT messaging and AIS service for global customers. On December 21, 2015, another 11 OG2 satellites were launched aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 launch vehicle. On March 1, 2016, following an in-orbit testing period, ORBCOMM initiated commercial service for the 11 OG2 satellites. The satellites communication can provide both M2M and IoT messaging and could function as an AIS service for the multimodal transport market in Europe.
Falcon 9 transporting 11 OG2 satellites of ORBCOMM, Source ORBCOMM
Frank Ribbe (Senior Sales Manger) continues that in addition to satellite data communication, ORBCOMM has partnered with leading telecommunication conglomerates around the globe including AT&T, Orange, T-Mobile, Telefonica, Verizon, Rogers and Vodafone. At Combined Transport Magazine, we see this as being ORBCOMM’s main competitive advantage. The company has a dual offer: a cellular network connectivity and global, two-way satellite data communication connectivity.
Looking further at ORBCOMM’s portfolio, Mr Ribbe demonstrated a range of low-cost sensor devices, such as the GT 1100 trailer tracking solution and the GT 2300 intermodal container monitoring solution. The GT 2300 is a self-powered system with cellular communications and GPS, providing valuable insight into the status, movement, loading and unloading of container operations. By leveraging powerful telematics capabilities integrated with intermodal information systems, the GT 2300 enables operators to optimise container utilisation and movement. Thirdly, ORBCOMM’s RT 6000+ is a two-way, dual-mode reefer monitoring and control device that provides comprehensive fuel and temperature management, maintenance and logistics services for temperature-controlled cargo. The sensor devices are cost competitive and can, therefore, be a viable option for multimodal IoT solutions.