Satellite-Based Data Layer Company Ursa Raises $15 Million In Funding

By Dan Anderson ● November 12, 2019
  • Geospatial analytics-as-a-service company Ursa announced it has raised $15 million in Series B funding led by Razor’s Edge Ventures

Ursa — a geospatial analytics-as-a-service company that is democratizing access to commercially available synthetic-aperture radar (SAR) data — announced that it has raised $15 million in Series B funding led by Razor’s Edge Ventures. And Citi, New York Ventures (venture capital investment arm of New York State’s chief economic development agency Empire State Development), and several others joined this round of funding. Plus this round is also backed by return investors Paladin Capital Group, RRE Ventures and S&P Global.

Ursa essentially aggregates data from the industry’s largest network of radar satellites and fuses it with other data sources. Then it delivers proprietary analytics-based information and products to provide customers with alternative sources of market or business intelligence in order to help them make better-informed decisions. The advantage of satellite-based SAR is that it can collect information in all weather conditions at any time of day or night.

“Since Ursa’s founding, global businesses in the energy and finance sectors have relied on our comprehensive and timely analytics to make strategic decisions,” said Ursa co-founder and CEO Adam Maher. “As Ursa continues to build on our technology, we’ve identified a number of other opportunities to pursue high-value markets and customers that have not historically leveraged the power of SAR and would benefit from these insights. This round of capital will support Ursa’s vision of turning data into impact.”

Ursa’s round of funding validates the company’s unique capabilities and business traction in a market that is anticipated to surpass $4 billion by 2024.

“While governments have utilized and recognized the value of SAR imagery for several decades, it has not been until recently that this data is sufficiently timely and cost-efficient to drive real commercial market opportunities,” added Mark Spoto, Managing Director of Razor’s Edge. “Ursa’s decision to pursue a ‘data first’ approach, synergistically integrating datasets from numerous data providers that have come to market over the last several years, made this investment opportunity compelling. The insights that can be derived from Ursa’s ‘virtual constellation’ will drive significant new business in multiple enterprise market verticals.”

With this round of funding, Ursa will further support its growing customer base and expand into new vertical markets to serve the evolving needs and high demand for satellite data and analytics.

“New and innovative startups throughout New York State are making use of cutting-edge technology to provide services in a modern, diversified economy. Ursa’s commercial use of SAR imagery will fill an economic niche with help from a New York Ventures investment,” explained Empire State Development Acting Commissioner and President & CEO-designate Eric Gertler.

Launched in 2014, Ursa pioneered transparency in the oil and gas supply chain by using satellite-based radar and the company is expanding applications of the technology into new supply chains and markets. And Ursa’s geospatial intelligence portfolio sets new standards for accuracy and reliability and empowers customers with critical insights.

“The satellite industry is undergoing a dramatic transformation, not unlike what happened in enterprise computing 20 years ago,” commented Will Porteous, general partner and COO of RRE Ventures. “Open interfaces and data fusion are enabling a massive amount of value to be defined in software. Ursa is leading the industry in this approach and we are proud to be associated with the company.”