Top Venture-Backed Space Startups

August 28, 2015

12:42 pm

Since 2014, space startups have raised more than $1.8 billion – with $1.76 billion of that raised in just the first half of 2015 (all thanks to mega-rounds raised by SpaceX and OneWeb). This according to a recently released Frontier Tech Report by CB Insights. The report looks at the funding trends in frontier tech – from space and drones to augmented reality and virtual reality – and pinpoints the top startups getting funding and the most active venture firms investing in these technologies. As part of the report, they looked at the top venture-backed space startups that are leading humanity’s efforts into the final frontier.

research-frontier-tech-report[1]

(CB Insights)

The overall space exploration and technology market is huge – estimated to be worth a whopping $314 billion. Of those companies funded by venture capital, a majority work primarily on space services or rocket technology (46 percent of all space startups), followed by satellite operations and technology (35 percent). Companies like SpaceX, for instance, have managed to gain major funding for their various efforts into rocket technology. Indeed, one of the most notable funding rounds in the industry to-date was SpaceX’s $1 billion raise this past January raised from the likes of Google and Fidelity.

research-frontier-tech-report[2]

(CB Insights)

According to the CB Insights report, the most active VCs in space technology are Lux Capital, RRE Ventures, and Bessemer Venture Partners. These are closely followed by Khosla Ventures, Promus Ventures, and Founders Fund (one of the participants in that SpaceX round). The report also noted the top venture-backed space startups, which you can find below:

SpaceX

Total Funding: $1.19 billion

Designs, manufactures, and launches advanced rockets and spacecrafts.

OneWeb

Total Funding: $500 million

Plans to put more than 600 satellites in space to enable global internet access.

Planet Labs

Total Funding: $196.1 million

Collects/analyzes data about the earth via agile satellite constellation development.

Kymeta

Total Funding: $82 million

Develops a new form of satellite antenna to connect mobile networks and communicate satellites.

Spire

Total Funding: $69.4 million

Collects/analyzes data via satellite constellations related to global trade, weather, and more.

Mapbox

Total Funding: $60.6 million

Map data, design, and publishing platform.

To learn more insights about the state of space startup funding, read the Frontier Tech Report from CB Insights.

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Ronald Barba was the previous managing editor of Tech.Co. His primary story interests include industry trends, consumer-facing apps/products, the startup lifestyle, business ethics, diversity in tech, and what-is-this-bullsh*t things. Aside from writing about startups and entrepreneurship, Ronald is interested in 'Doctor Who', Murakami, 'The Mindy Project', and fried chicken. He is currently based in New York because he mistakenly studied philosophy in college and is now a "writer". Tweet @RonaldPBarba.

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