Looking for the next SpaceX! A record high in venture capital in space

Netease Technology News on January 18th, according to foreign media reports, a recent report by venture capital firm Space Angels shows that last year, 178 commercial space startups worldwide received a total of $ 5.8 billion in venture capital, calculated in US dollars. An increase of 38% over the previous year also makes 2019 the year with the most private space investment.

Amazon co-founder Jeff Bezos’ startup Blue Origin and Musk’s space exploration technology company SpaceX raised about 41% of the total investment. The report also covers aerospace companies from China and the UK. More investors are also trying to enter the company at a later stage.

“We believe that as the company grows from early concepts to gradual growth, this reflects the healthy maturity of the space startup ecosystem.” Space Angels CEO Chad Anderson said in an email accompanying the report.

Figure: Investment sources of space startups and the proportion of financing in each market

Bezos invested about $ 1.4 billion in Blue Origin and raised funds primarily through the sale of Amazon stock. Musk’s SpaceX is close behind. According to Pitchbook data, SpaceX has raised more than $ 1 billion in J-, K-, and L-round funding in 2019, and the company has a valuation of more than $ 33 billion. In addition, led by Japan’s SoftBank Group and Salinas Group, satellite Internet company OneWeb also raised more than $ 1 billion in funding.

The United States is still the country with the largest space investment, and 55% of the funds this year went to companies based in the United States. British space startups have attracted around 24% of total funding in 2019. Over the past few years, British activities in the space sector have increased, and a launch center is currently under construction in Scotland.

However, the largest round of financing outside the United States came from China, and Alibaba-backed Chihiro received a total of about $ 141 million in Series A financing last October, with funding mainly from Chinese state-owned enterprises. The company is developing a satellite positioning system for the Internet of Things to achieve centimeter-level positioning accuracy. In addition, in the fourth quarter of last year, China’s space entrepreneurial financing harvest was quite fruitful, accounting for 34% of the total financing amount in the quarter, and the funds were mainly invested in the satellite and launch fields.

As far as the division of investment services is concerned, the funding situation for the launch and satellite services is roughly the same. Specifically, Earth observation is the single largest investment in the satellite business, followed by satellite manufacturing and communications. However, in terms of the number of transactions, about three-quarters of the transactions are for satellite services.

The report states that since 2009, total investment in the space start-up sector has been approximately $ 25.7 billion. Especially in the past few years, this number is still accelerating. A total of about 535 startups have received financing since 2009, but this number is expected to increase as the industry grows around the world.

The report said: “Space entrepreneurial ecosystem has proven its financial health, its business is increasingly global, and its content topics are diverse.

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