Covid-19 – our approach

26 March 2020

Rupert Pearce, CEO, Inmarsat

Inmarsat is no different to any other company in the current situation around the coronavirus, Covid-19. As a global business, we are following the guidance of the relevant authorities around the world to take sensible precautions. We are protecting our teams and managing our operations to deliver our world-leading service to our customers within that framework. As the guidance changes, as circumstances in various locations change, so does our approach. But the commitment to our people and to continuing our operations does not change.

It is too soon to tell what lasting impact this will have on the global economy or the long-term status of the markets that we serve, so I won’t speculate on trying to predict the future as it relates to this virus. The key focus is on people and their wellbeing.

We’re also not claiming to be a leader or unique as we tackle this challenge. But we aim for excellence in everything we do, including in transparency where possible, and so I wanted to take the opportunity to set out what we are doing.

We have established a team within Inmarsat to manage the situation for us to safeguard our teams and to maintain business as usual, within the guidelines of the relevant authorities worldwide. Globally, this team is taking input from across the business as well as from a huge number of credible external sources.

Our colleagues are our first priority and our decisions are based on what is best for them. Our people underpin our success and that of our customers, partners and users, who are in the same situation that we are all in. I am grateful for the commitment our teams are demonstrating around the world to their safety and to maintaining our service. I am also very grateful for the understanding shown by our customers, partners and users.

We have taken some steps pre-emptively. Teams worldwide have been given enhanced information on how to maintain personal and building hygiene. In certain locations some colleagues have been working from home for some time while in other locations the decision to apply this to other teams may be taken shortly too. In certain parts of the world now, where the authorities have lifted local restrictions and advised it is safe to do so, people are returning to work.

Corporate travel to certain parts of the world has either been stopped or restricted temporarily. Enhanced cleaning has also been put in place in our buildings. Arrangements have been made to ensure our services continue and key personnel have access to the buildings and technology that they need in order to do so. In short, we have taken steps to ensure our teams can work from alternate locations efficiently and that the key operations teams continue to operate effectively.

There will be other moves that are needed from us in the future to play our part in tackling this situation. We will make them at the appropriate time to ensure we uphold our commitments to our colleagues, our customers, our partners and our users as well as the communities in which we work and live. These decisions are taken based on the guidance that we receive and the data that we have available. We are very much operating with a view to being able to respond as markets around the globe move and we are prepared, as ever, to support our customers with their local and global needs. As things bounce back in the future we are positioned to return to normality immediately ourselves.

We are committed to our people and to our customers, partners and users. They remain our focus while we navigate this new challenge, as we have done with other issues in the past. Thank you to them all for their support and their approach to working collaboratively with us as we navigate this global challenge alongside the rest of the world. My best wishes to everyone to stay healthy as we work through this together around the world.

About the author

Rupert Pearce joined Inmarsat in January 2005 as Group General Counsel and, from January 2009, additionally held the position of Senior Vice President, Inmarsat Enterprises. He became Chief Executive Officer in January 2012. Previously, Rupert worked for Atlas Venture, where he was a partner working with the firm’s European and US investment teams. He was previously also a partner at the international law firm Linklaters, where he spent 13 years specialising in corporate finance, M&A and private equity transactions. Rupert received an MA (First Class) in Modern History from Oxford University and won the 1995 Fullbright Fellowship in US securities law, studying at the Georgetown Law Center. He has been a visiting fellow of the Imperial College Business School, London, lecturing on the school’s Entrepreneurship programme, and is the co-author of Raising Venture Capital (Wiley).