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Varda Announces Series B Funding to Build Factories in Space

Varda Space's re-entry capsule
Varda Space’s re-entry capsule. Credit: Varda Space

Ibadan, 8 April 2024. – Varda Space Industries, Inc. has announced the completion of a $90 million Series B funding round, which Caffeinated Capital led. The round also enjoyed participation from Lux Capital, General Catalyst, Founders Fund, and Khosla Ventures. As a result of the round, Varda has now raised $145 million to date.

Since opening its office doors in 2021, Varda has successfully launched and reentered its first hypersonic reentry capsule, the W-1. The capsule’s payload included an experiment to reformulate Ritonavir, a well-known antiretroviral drug primarily used to treat HIV. By processing pharmaceuticals and other materials in microgravity, the near-weightless conditions in low-Earth orbit, Varda offers a unique environment not available through terrestrial pharmaceutical processing.

In addition, Varda’s end-to-end orbit and reentry system make it possible for industry to access space to advance various reentry-related technologies through rapid testing and data generation. The Varda team also published on the discovery of a third form of the HIV drug Ritonavir, as well as the development of a hypergravity crystallization platform, which has shown ways that gravity can be used as a variable in small molecule therapeutics formulation and development.

Speaking on the round, Varda President Delian Asparouhov commented, “Over the past 15 years, many of the largest biopharma companies in the world, through research on the ISS, have shown the huge potential of microgravity. Varda is their first pathway to commercialize this work, and we’re happy to see our investors recognize that potential.” The Company’s CEO, Will Bruey, also added, “Access to microgravity means Varda can help partners develop unique pharmaceutical formulations not otherwise possible. Varda offers a path to revolutionize the pharmaceutical industry, potentially leading to reductions in healthcare costs and better patient outcomes.”

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