The first contract PR of 2013 for Level 3 Communications (NYSE:LVLT, news, filings) was a high profile one over in Europe. The NATO Communications and Information Agency has brought them in to install and maintain an IPVPN for the NATO-Russia Council Cooperative Airspace Initiative, a.k.a. the NRC CAI.
The NRC CAI shares monitoring information about what’s flying around between the two airspaces – which of course covers pretty much everything in the northern half of the northern hemisphere and then some, although here they seem to be talking about EMEA. The intention of the initiative is in general to increase airspace transparency and more specifically to better discern between ordinary and suspicious activity.
In order to share that information in real time 24/7, as it will be doing in 2013, that means lots of data traffic between the various monitoring nodes and centers. Level 3 will be hooking up the NATO CAI locations, although further location information was not available. Presumably the Russian side of things will be handled by one of the Russian carriers, with interconnection between the two.
It’s the sort of deal that would probably usually have gone to one or more incumbent providers in Europe and/or North America. That being said it’s probably higher in terms of profile than dollars, although in contributing to Level 3′s top line every little bit will help this year.