Devas denied compensation of $562m
August 30, 2022
The Delhi High Court firmly denied the granting of a $562.2 million (€562.2m) arbitration award – plus damages and interest – to Devas Multimedia. The Court, ruling on August 29th, said the claim suffered from “patent illegalities and fraud”. Most importantly, the Court said the award was in conflict with the public policy of India.
Devas is an LLC incorporated in December 2004. Antrix, the then commercial arm of India’s Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and Devas had entered into a binding contract on January 28th 2015, for the lease of transponder capacity on an ISRO/Antrix S-band satellite. The agreement was cancelled in 2011 by Antrix citing “national security”.
The contract required Antrix to build, launch and operate two satellites and lease spectrum capacity on those satellites to Devas, which Devas planned to resell. In return, Devas agreed to pay to Antrix fees of $20 million per satellite, and lease fees of $9 million to $11 million annually.
The Court’s decision ignores (and sets aside) the decision by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), which ruled that ISRO/Antrix must pay compensation of $560 million plus interest to Devas.