Spacetech startup Skyroot Aerospace raises $51M in Series B led by GIC
, a Hyderabad-based spacetech startup, has raised $51 million (Rs 403 crore) in Series B led by GIC. This is perhaps the largest funding round in the Indian spacetech sector so far.
The round also saw participation from investors like Myntra and CultFit founder Mukesh Bansal, Greenko Group founders (Anil Chalamalasetty and Mahesh Kolli), Solar Industries India Limited, Google board member Ram Shriram’s Sherpalo Ventures, Neeraj Arora (Former-WhatsApp Global Business Chief), Wami Capital, and existing investors.
Mayank Rawat, Managing Director of GIC India Direct Investment Group, will be joining the startup's board.
In a statement, the startup said that the funding follows the Indian government’s major thrust into the space sector by opening it up to private sector players, including startups, and encouraging private investments.
This investment further validates Skyroot’s strengths in space technology and boosts its capabilities to tap into trillion-dollar space business opportunities, it added. Skyroot plans to cater to the burgeoning demand from the international small satellite market.
“This round puts us on a trajectory of hyper-growth by funding all of our initial developmental launches, and enables building infrastructure to meet high launch cadence required by our satellite customers. Our objective is to establish ourselves as a provider of best-in-class rocket launch services and the go-to destination for affordable and reliable small satellite launches,” said Pawan Kumar Chandana, Co-founder and CEO of Skyroot.
Representational image [ Image Credit: Shutterstock]
The company, which has close to 200 employees, designs and tests multiple rocket propulsion systems. Skyroot is also the first startup to sign an MoU with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) for sharing facilities and expertise.
“We have validated all three propulsion technologies in our Vikram space launch vehicles, and completed a full duration test of one of our rocket stages in May. We are also planning a demonstrator launch to space this year,” said Naga Bharath Daka, Co-founder and COO of Skyroot.
"This round will help us get to full-fledged commercial satellite launch scale within a year from now. We have started booking payload slots for our upcoming launches," he added.
Rothschild & Co India was the financial advisors for this funding round.
Founded in 2018, Skyroot has built and tested India's first privately developed cryogenic, hypergolic-liquid, and solid fuel-based rocket engines. The R&D and production activities extensively use advanced composite and 3D-printing technologies.