Orbex secures $24m funding round for UK space launch

Funding | Manufacturing | South East | Technology

Orbex, the innovative European space launch company, has secured $24m in a funding round led by investment company BGF and Octopus Ventures, one of the largest VCs in Europe.

BGF and Octopus Ventures have joined existing investors High-Tech Gründerfonds, Heartcore Capital and Elecnor S.A. – parent company of the multi-national space firm Deimos Space – in a new funding round for the orbital launch services company. The new investments secure the roadmap to the first launch from the Space Hub Sutherland spaceport in Scotland.

“Orbex is an impressive UK company which is developing a strongly differentiated and innovative launch solution for the rapidly-growing small satellite market. In Europe, they are a recognized leader with an experienced team, substantial institutional support, a growing customer list and patented technology. The private space sector remains a key future industry for both Scottish and UK governments and we’re very excited to be backing one of the most compelling examples of this evolving sector,” said Keith Barclay, Investor at BGF.

Conceived and developed as an environmentally sustainable launch system, the Orbex Prime rocket uniquely uses bio-propane, a renewable biofuel that cuts CO2 emissions by 90% compared to traditional kerosene-based rocket fuels. Designed to be recoverable and re-usable, Orbex Prime is intended to leave no debris in the ocean or in orbit around the Earth.

“Orbex is creating a highly innovative launch solution that is rapidly gaining market traction with very serious customers. We’re delighted to be part of the future of the company and are very excited about what they’re looking to achieve, including the first ever vertical launches from UK soil,” said Simon King, Partner at Octopus Ventures.

“This financing round is an important step forward for Orbex. It helps us maintain our rapid pace and allows us to move forward with certainty towards our first launch from the Sutherland spaceport. With BGF and Octopus Ventures we have found significant strategic partners who recognise our vision, and who have the capability to support our development through both the early flights and into subsequent growth and production,“ said Chris Larmour, Orbex CEO.

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