Fieldstone Partners has served as a financial advisor to Iridium Holdings, LLC and its successor, Iridium Communications Inc. since 2004. Iridium, based in Tysons Corner, Virginia, operates the largest commercial satellite constellation in the world, and it is the only constellation to provide secure voice and data communications to all parts of the globe.
Fieldstone began its efforts when Iridium was operating at break-even levels. In 2012, the company recorded operational EBITDA of over $200 million on revenues of almost $400 million.
Fieldstone has provided a range of services to Iridium over the past five years, including:
- Acquisition advisory services, examining a range of target acquisitions
- Long range financial planning for Iridium NEXT, an approximate $2.7 billion second generation satellite constellation, which is now in its active construction phase, with a first launch of new satellites scheduled for early 2015
- Co-managing an underwriter selection process for a $200 million underwritten senior debt placement, which was completed in July 2007
- Co-advising on an equity financing process, which culminated in an agreement in September 2008 to merge Iridium into GHL Acquisition Company (AMEX:GHQ), a $400 million publicly traded Special Purpose Acquisition Company managed by Greenhill & Co. (NYSE:GHL). This cash and stock merger closed in late September 2009, and the company now trades as Iridium Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ:IRDM).
- Co-advising on the creation and financing of Aireon LLC, a joint venture between Iridium and NAV CANADA formed in 2012 to finance an approximate $400 million hosted payload program on Iridium NEXT that will revolutionize global air traffic monitoring. (See also the separate case study on Aireon)