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Hinduja group firm Nxtdigital and Thaicom have signed a memorandum of understanding to form a strategic partnership to enter the broadband-over-satellite market and related services in India. The agreement envisages a partnership that includes deployment of broadband-over-satellite (BoS) systems on India-focused capacity. The BoS systems could be enhanced to provide additional capacity on a software-defined high throughput satellite, augmenting the existing IPSTAR-1 -- the first broadband satellite in the world which has been operational over India for the past several years.

The pact includes a discussion on possible partnership in broadband subsidiary of NDL -- OneOTT Intertainment Limited (OIL) -- which is India's fourth largest private internet service provider with over 1 million customers and a presence in over 150 cities and towns, according to a joint statement by the two companies .

The details of partnership elements are being discussed and will be documented in definitive agreements between Thaicom and NDL, the statement said.

"We are delighted to ink this MoU with Nxtdigital, which is easily one of the best digital platforms groups in India. With our global satellite experience spanning nearly three decades and Nxtdigital's distribution expertise, vast footprint and broadband penetration - we believe that together, we are best suited to delivering broadband over satellite and related services to India, not just at a high level of quality of service, but also cost-effectively," said Patompob (Nile) Suwansiri, director and chief executive officer at Thaicom.

Both the companies have also agreed to set up a centre for excellence to develop new satellite and related digital based technologies through artificial intelligence and analytics.

"Through this engagement with Thaicom, a global leader in satellite technology, we will look to facilitate digital inclusion across education, healthcare, information and entertainment -- by extending satellite-based broadband connectivity and services to our customers there and also to underserved and other poorly connected markets," Vynsley Fernandes, managing director and CEO at Nxtdigital, said.