- Satellite builder company Astranis announced it raised $90 million in a debt and equity round led by Venrock and TriplePoint Capital
Astranis, a satellite builder company that is planning to launch and run a 350-kilogram geostationary communications satellite by the end of the year, announced it raised $90 million in a debt and equity round led by Venrock and TriplePoint Capital. With this round of funding, Astranis plans to finish its first satellite, which is a broadband “MicroGEO” satellite that is going to deliver an Internet connection to Alaska.
The $40 million Series B was led by Venrock. And existing investors Fifty Years, Refactor Capital, Y Combinator, and Andreessen Horowitz. TriplePoint Capital is providing the $50 million debt facility.
Including this round of funding, Astranis has raised $108 million in total funding to date. In an interview with SpaceNews, Astranis CEO John Gedmark said that a portion of the funding will likely be used to expand its 100 person company in anticipation of additional satellite orders.
“We’ve seen a huge amount of customer interest from companies and customers all over the world,” said Gedmark via SpaceNews. “Between different customers that we’ve been working with, we easily have 20 to 30 satellites worth of interest in the pipeline. This allows us to begin scaling the company up to be in a position to serve all those needs.”
Gedmark pointed out that Astranis is going to focus solely on 350-kilogram satellites in order to standardize production and speed manufacturing. And the company is aiming to eventually reduce the 18 month build time to 6 months.
One of the company’s customers is Pacific Dataport, which is an Alaska-based company that is leasing the satellite’s 7.5 gigabits per second of capacity to provide an Internet connection to Alaskans. And Gedmark said the satellite is likely launching during the final quarter of 2020 as a secondary payload on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
Astranis also announced that Skybox Imaging founding CEO Dan Berkenstock and Venrock partner Ethan Batraski have joined its board of directors.
“Global connectivity is an industry prime for disruption,” added Venrock partner Ethan Batraski. “Astranis’s team and microsatellite technology put them in a strong position to fulfill the needs of the new market, which is vastly different than the market of 20 or 30 years ago.”