Viasat kicked off an expanding presence in Europe this week with the opening of a new office in Dublin. Viasat President and Chief Operating Officer Rick Baldridge was on hand for the opening of the new state-of-the-art office in Dublin’s Silicon Docks area. Also joining in the festivities was John Halligan, Ireland’s Minister of State at the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation.
With almost 100 staff currently on site, and plans to grow the team to 250 in the coming years, Viasat Ireland is focused on developing next-generation software technology for the company’s target broadband markets.
“We are expanding in Dublin as part of our overall objective to strengthen our regional service capabilities, in order to enhance our collaboration with customers and partners throughout Europe, and further build software and technology expertise in the region,” Baldridge said. “We believe the strong talent base located in Ireland will greatly expand our technical and business presence in Europe, and enable us to rapidly respond to new global broadband opportunities across a number of industry sectors.”
In the high-tech office located beside Dublin’s picturesque Grand Canal, just south of the city center, the team here works primarily in Viasat’s commercial aviation segment. Viasat’s wireless in-flight entertainment (IFE) software, designed and built in Dublin, allows airline passengers to watch in-flight entertainment on their own devices, removing heavy and expensive seatback screens from the aircraft. The software is deployed at airlines such as American Airlines and Qantas, complementing Viasat in-flight internet service.
Another focus area for Viasat Ireland is AeroDocs, an aviation document management system. AeroDocs enables the paperless flight deck, with advanced functionality for airline pilot EFBs (electronic flight bags, which replace up to 50 pounds of paper manuals per aircraft). Viasat AeroDocs is used by many of the world’s leading airlines, including Singapore Airlines, Qatar Airways, Cathay Pacific and Japan Airlines.
The skilled teams at the new Viasat Ireland facility are expected to drive innovation in software engineering and development, logistics, customer success, support, design and development in residential and maritime market. The Dublin team will also support European residential broadband and Wi-Fi markets, government systems as well as for Viasat’s next-generation ultra-high capacity satellite platform, known as ViaSat-3.
“I am pleased to see the prominent role the European Space Agency (ESA) and Ireland’s Industrial Development Authority can play in supporting the growth of companies, like Viasat, throughout Europe,” Halligan said. “Ireland is a region where companies can thrive through fostering ongoing research and innovation.”
With ViaSat-2 soon to enter service on transatlantic air routes and the ViaSat-3 global broadband constellation under construction, the Viasat Ireland facility has a major role to play in helping Viasat meet its corporate goal: to develop the ultimate global communications network, and to power high-quality, secure, affordable, fast connections to impact people’s lives anywhere they are — on the ground, in the air or at sea.