Declan Ganley’s Rivada pays €6.5m to Terran Orbital as part of satellite deal

Rivada raising funds to build a multibillion-dollar satellite constellation made up of hundreds of low-Earth orbit satellites

Terran Orbital, an American satellite manufacturer, booked $6.9 million (€6.5 million) in total revenue from Declan Ganley’s Rivada Networks in 2023, a figure that has likely risen with further payments Rivada made earlier this year.

Rivada is in the midst of raising funds to build a multibillion-dollar satellite constellation made up of hundreds of low-earth orbit satellites in order to deliver a kind of private, unhackable internet, which Mr Ganley has termed the OuterNet.

As part of that plan it has struck a contract with Terran to build 300 satellites in a deal worth $2.4 billion, which contains an option for Rivada to buy another 300 satellites. The company has already struck a deal with Elon Musk’s SpaceX to launch the satellites into orbit.

Neither Rivada nor Terran has given precise figures on how much has been paid to date, though Terran’s latest annual report shows that “the amount of revenue recognised under the Rivada Agreement was $6.9 million during 2023″.


Rivada has made further payments since then, according to Terran’s stock exchange filings, which disclosed that it received a further payment in January as part of the contract “for the completion of a program milestone”. As a result, it said, Rivada was current on all outstanding invoices.

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It’s not clear how much that payment was for, though Terran noted as part of the announcement that it had an end-of-year cash balance in excess of $70 million “primarily resulting from the receipt of key customer payments at year-end”. A large portion of that payment is likely to have come from Rivada, which makes up nearly 90 per cent of Terran’s order backlog.

Terran’s statement added that it “expects to receive additional milestone payments in 2024 and continues to expect to meet its delivery obligations under the Rivada contract on schedule in 2025 and 2026”.

Rivada has remained tight-lipped about how much it has raised for the OuterNet project, and from whom. A spokesman for the company declined to give any details to The Irish Times when asked. However, Terran’s chief executive, Marc Bell, has made several public comments about the progress of Mr Ganley’s fundraising efforts.

In November, during a call with investors, Mr Bell said Rivada’s funding was coming from a “large sovereign that has not yet publicly announced their support for the project”. Then in a town-hall meeting with Terran employees in mid-December, he said that he’d had “dinner with Declan Ganley last week in DC” during which they had discussed the funding. According to reports by TechCrunch, a financial data and news website, Mr Bell said, “He told me they expect to close tomorrow on their funding. He showed me the documents. I saw them, I read them. He texted me this morning and maybe Thursday, Friday now. […] As long as it’s by Christmas, I’ll be happy. Nothing wrong with getting a good Christmas present.”

Subsequent to that, one of Rivada’s Irish subsidiaries, Rivada Networks Limited, published a number of company filings which made reference to a note purchase agreement which was dated December 28th, 2023. That filing listed an entity called Dukhan Investment Company as the lead investor, and cited several other investors as part of the fundraising.

It is not clear just who is behind Dukhan Investment Company, or where that entity is registered, or who the other investors might be. Nor is there any reference to how much was raised from that funding round.

A spokesman for Rivada Networks declined to give any further information when asked, citing a strict confidentiality clause surrounding the fundraising.