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#SpaceWatchGL Column: E2MC Update On Space-Financing Rounds in August 2021

by Raphael Roettgen

Photo by NASA on Unsplash.

August’s financing table is again led by a space company raising funds via a proposed merger with a SPAC: VirginOrbit who may raise up to US$483 million* from this deal. Over two dozen other rounds raised a total in excess of US$700 million.

Besides yet another SPAC, other noteworthy deal structure were Swiss IoT constellation’s Astrocast’s, which combined a private raise with an immediate direct listing on the Oslo stock exchange, and Endurosat joining so far small but growing club of space companies raising venture debt from the European Investment Bank (EIB).

On the M&A side, it became known via an FCC filing that SpaceX had acquired U.S. IoT constellation operator Swarm. This is a rare deal for SpaceX (at least as far as is publicly known), a company that has the reputation to prefer to do things in-house. The most frequent guess in the space community about the potential deal rationale appears to be that it was an “aqui-hire.”

Reminder: if you are following the new space sector and are looking for a concise introduction to its trends, main business activities, and possible outlook (and if you happen to speak German!) you may be interested in my new book I recently published with SpaceWatch.Global – you can check it out here.

* Sum of cash in trust plus PIPE proceeds, assuming no redemptions

 

Company US$m Country Subsector Investors
Virgin Orbit 483.0

(SPAC)

United States launch Boeing, AE Industrial Partners, NextGen, others

 

OneWeb 300.0 United Kingdom satcomm Hanwha Systems

 

MinoSpace 77.0 China remote sensing Hengxu Capital, SAIC Capital, Auto Capital, Ruijian Capital, Wenzhou Transportation Group

 

Hermeus 60.0

(“strategic financing”)

 

United States launch USAF, others

 

Sceye 50.0 United States remote sensing KittyHawk Ventures

 

Astrocast 49.0 Switzerland satcomm (IoT) Adit, Palantir, DAA, Primo Space, others

 

Space Transportation 46.0 China launch Guosheng Group, Keli Venture Capital, Matrix Partners China, Oriza Seed Capital (Oriza Yuandian), Source Code Capital, Summitview Capital, Volcanics Venture, Zhencheng Capital

 

Lingkong Tianxing 46.3 China launch Matrix Partners China, Shanghai Guosheng (Group), SummitView Capital, Keli Capital, Oriza Holdings

 

Ispace Technologies 46.0 Japan lunar Aizawa Asset Management, Aizawa Securities, HiJoJo Partners, Incubate Fund, Innovation Engine, Katsunori Sago, SBI Investment

 

Kairos Aerospace 26.0 United States remote sensing John Crane, OGCI Climate Investments, Energy Innovation Capital, DCVC

 

Latent AI 19.0 United States NA Autotech Ventures, 40 North Ventures, Lockheed Martin, Booz Allen Hamilton, Future Ventures, Blackhorn Ventures, Perot Jain, Gravity Ranch, SRI Ventures,

 

Skywatch 17.2 Canada remote sensing Bullpen Capital, BDC Venture Capital, Space Capital, Drive Capital, Golden Ventures

 

EnduroSat 11.9

(venture debt)

Bulgaria spacecraft components European Investment Bank

 

Xplore 9.0 United States spacecraft components KittyHawk Ventures, VU Venture Partners, Venture University

 

Urban Sky 4.2 United States remote sensing NA
SpeQtral 3.3 United States satcomm (QKD) Xora Innovation, others

 

Alpine Advanced Materials 2.5 United States spacecraft components NA
Benchmark Space Systems 1.1 United States Remote sensing Creative Destruction Lab (CDL), The Flying Object, FreshTracks Capital, LaunchCapital, Vermont Center for Emerging Technologies

 

Spaceit 1.0 Estonia services Icebreaker.vc
Kall Morris 0.3 United States orbit services NA
Epsilon3 0.1 United States services Y Combinator
Latitudo40 0.1 Italy remote sensing – downstream EXPERT DOJO
Beijing Interstellar Development Technology

 

NA China launch Inno Angel Fund, others
Cemvita Factory Inc. NA United States space resources 8090 Partners, Climate Capital, Oxy Low Carbon Ventures, Seldor Capital
HEO Robotics NA Australia orbit services David Harding, Tim Parsons, Matt Ryall, Christian Thaler-Wolski and Phil Hayes-St Clair, Solai Valliappan
Inversion Space NA United States orbit services Kohala Ventures
Istar Space Technology NA China spacecraft components Shenzhen Capital Group, ZJU Joint Innovation Investment, CDH Investments

 

Jiutian Xingge NA China Manufacturing Essential Capital (China)
Vyoma NA Germany orbit services Atlantic Labs
Wyvern NA Canada remote sensing Red Thread Ventures

 

Raphael Roettgen; Photo courtesy of the author

Raphael Roettgen provides financial advice to and invests proprietary capital in space companies as a managing director and founder of E2MC. He also advises institutional investors and governments on space. Previously, Raphael has held senior roles at global investment banks and hedge funds and was also a fintech entrepreneur in Brazil. He holds degrees in finance from Wharton, machine learning from PUC-Rio and space studies from the International Space University, as well as the CFA and FRM charters.

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