With how ridiculously popular ride-sharing services like Uber, companies in several other fields have been looking to achieve a similar level of success, but Spaceflight Industries may be of the most unique. As the company’s name suggests, Spaceflight Industries helps customers ranging form Planet Labs to the American government launch small satellites by piggybacking on larger space transportation vehicles and it just raised $19.2 million in funding to help expand.
Spaceflight Industries, which helps the U.S. government, Planet Labs and other customers launch small satellites on larger space transportation vehicles, has snagged $19.2 million in financing, according to a SEC filing. Backers of the company — which is led by former GotVoice and Starwave executive Curt Blake and Andrews Space founder Jason Andrews — include Chugach Alaska Corp. and RRE Ventures. Paul Allen’s Vulcan Ventures also participated, along with Razor’s Edge Ventures. In some ways, Spaceflight piggybacks satellites on existing launch vehicles developed by SpaceX, Orbital Sciences, Roscosmos and Virgin Galactic, the equivalent of a “ride-share” program, according to Andrews. This ride share, however, is transporting satellites rather than people. And it takes the small satellites to altitudes ranging from 300 kilometers to 60,000 kilometers above Earth. The cost of launching the satellites ranges from $295,000 to tens of millions of dollars.