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Viasat to Expand US Air Force's Situational Awareness Skills

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Viasat, Inc. VSAT recently secured a prime contract from the U.S. Air Force to fortify the tactical data networking capabilities of warfighters. The indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract, worth a maximum ceiling of $90 million, will enhance situational awareness and mission co-ordination across military branches with improved communication system in a multi-domain battlespace.

Per the deal, Viasat will offer Battlefield Awareness Targeting System—Dismounted (BATS-D) handheld Link 16 radios along with associated operator training and maintenance to the U.S. Air Force. The BATS-D is reportedly the first and only handheld Link 16 radio in the world that helps to bridge a critical gap between air and ground forces by providing warfighters with real-time, secure, reliable access to integrated air and ground information. This, in turn, offers improved situational awareness to coordinate and maneuver forces instantaneously.

The radio also features J-Voice capability for direct voice communication with other Link 16 users, ensuring a direct link between dismounted ground warfighters and Air Support aircraft to minimize the risk of fratricide. The device can be vest-worn, handheld, or mounted, and is ideal for integrated military operations.

Viasat maintains a leading position in the satellite and wireless communications market. Encouragingly, a blue-chip customer base, which comprises the Department of Defense, civil agencies, allied foreign governments, satellite network integrators as well as large communications service providers and enterprises, adds to its strength. The company’s Government Systems is acting as a major profit churner. Moreover, the impressive traction of Viasat 1-bandwith — the company’s first communication satellite and the world's most cost-effective satellite bandwidth — has been supporting the government and satellite business.

Viasat has partnered with various cloud computing providers across the globe to embed AI and ML features through its secure, high-speed and resilient global satellite communications (SATCOM) network and line of sight tactical network technologies. These have helped the company to deliver state-of-the-art Internet of battlefield things (IoBT) to significantly improve military readiness and mission effectiveness for the defense entities. The end-to-end communications SATCOM network of the company offers layered resiliency and elite satellite capacity to support an unrivalled range of operations requiring IoBT and cloud-based applications.

The stock has gained 16.9% in the past year compared with the industry‘s rally of 30.7%.

Viasat currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Some other top-ranked stocks in the broader space are SeaChange International, Inc. (SEAC - Free Report) , sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), and Plantronics, Inc. PLT and Spirent Communications PLC SPMYY, both carrying a Zacks Rank #2. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

SeaChange International has a long-term earnings growth expectation of 10%.

Plantronics surpassed estimates thrice in the trailing four quarters, the positive earnings surprise being 35.6%, on average.

Spirent Communications is currently trading at a forward P/E of 22.5x.

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