BGAN from Stratos Provides Communications for Balloon Expedition Over Africa’s Mount Kilimanjaro

Bethesda, Maryland (November 16, 2011) – Stratos Global, the leading global provider of advanced mobile and fixed-site remote communications solutions, today announced it successfully provided Inmarsat BGAN mobile satellite communications service to the Ultramagic Experience hot air balloon expedition over Africa’s Mount Kilimanjaro that ended August 30th.

The Ultramagic Experience was a 14-day expedition by seven balloons across Tanzania that featured flight over Kilimanjaro. This is the first time that BGAN has been used by balloonists. With a peak of 19,327 feet (5,891 meters) Kilimanjaro is Africa’s highest mountain.

Stratos provided satellite airtime and BGAN technical support to the expedition. Other expedition partners included Ultramagic, S.A. (, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of hot air balloons, and Stratos Channel Partner PrepaidSatphone (a trademark of Verasat Global SL;, which provided the expedition with BGAN equipment.

BGAN from Stratos provided reliable voice and data connectivity to the balloonists during the expedition, which was vital to ensure the safety of all balloonists. The BGAN connectivity also enabled fans to track the balloon’s itineraries and view spectacular images taken during flight – via the expedition’s web site

“The expert balloonists from all over the world who participated in this event were very grateful for the support that Stratos provided, and for the reliable connectivity that was made possible by BGAN. The BGAN connectivity was especially critical for one balloon crew that was forced to land high up on Mount Kilimanjaro and was later rescued,” said Ultramagic General Manager Josep Maria Llado.

Gerbrand Schalkwijk, Stratos Vice President, Global Enterprise Sales said, “The successful deployment for this event demonstrates BGAN’s versatility and reliability, even at very high altitudes. It is gratifying to work with our partners to help ensure the safety of the balloonists and the completion of this demanding expedition.”

About BGAN from Stratos
Stratos is one of the world’s largest distributors of Inmarsat’s BGAN (Broadband Global Area Network) service, a mobile satellite offering that uses portable, lightweight terminals to provide video (guaranteed up to 384 kbps streaming), high-speed data (up to 492 kbps) and voice connectivity anywhere in the world. Since its introduction in late 2005, BGAN from Stratos has been widely adopted by media organizations, military agencies, first responders and professionals in many other industries worldwide. Stratos now boasts more than 17,000 BGAN activations in 185 countries.

About The Stratos Advantage
Stratos customers fully utilize The Stratos Advantage, a suite of value-added services that help elevate BGAN from Stratos far above baseline offerings. These value-added services, including Stratos Dashboard, provide users with cost control, firewall management, full traffic information, pre-paid facilities, high security options, easy VPN access, messaging services and a full range of IP options. More information on BGAN from Stratos is available at

About Stratos
Stratos is the world's trusted leader for vital communications. Stratos offers the most powerful and extensive portfolio of remote communications solutions including mobile and fixed satellite and microwave services. More than 20,000 customers use Stratos products and industry-leading value-added services to optimize communications performance. Stratos serves U.S. and international government, military, first responder, NGO, oil and gas, industrial, maritime, aeronautical, enterprise, and media users on seven continents and across the world's oceans. Stratos is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Inmarsat plc. For more information, visit

For additional information :
Carla Riggs
Director, Corporate Communications
+1 709 748 4857

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 Ultramagic Baloon

During their expedition over Mount Kilimanjaro, balloonists used BGAN for reliable voice and data connectivity.