In a first, Indian space tech co Pixxel gets $5m – Times of India

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Sindhu Hariharan & Digbijay [email protected]
Chennai/Bengaluru: In a primary, the 18-month-old startup Pixxel has raised what is maybe the biggest seed funding of $5 million to ship satellites into house from India. This additionally marks the primary funding within the sector by established institutional enterprise capital companies Lightspeed India and Blume Ventures. Began by 22-year-old Awais Ahmed and Kshitij Khandelwal, the startup plans to ship its first earth-imaging satellite tv for pc into house in November. GrowX Enterprise, Inventus Capital India, Stanford Angels and Ryan Johnson, who co-founded satellite tv for pc imaging agency BlackBridge, have additionally participated within the fund-raise.
Pixxel has signed memorandums of understanding (MoUs) and letters of intent with main agriculture and oil & fuel companies in India and the US, who would use the picture knowledge. The brand new capital would largely be allotted to get the satellites into house and in addition construct its proprietary knowledge platform.
“Satellite tv for pc has been manufactured and it’s being examined proper now. We’re engaged on a second satellite tv for pc as nicely, which we plan to fly within the second half of subsequent 12 months,” mentioned Ahmed. Whereas its operations are throughout Bengaluru and Chennai, Pixxel is transferring all its operations to the capital of Karnataka, he added. Ahmed mentioned Pixxel has two Indian shoppers and eight extra globally, throughout the US and Europe.
Area tech, as a sector, has seen elevated entrepreneurial motion as demand for imaging-tech grows throughout sectors, and it will get cheaper to make and launch small satellites. There at the moment are 15 to 20 startups within the house tech sector in comparison with only a handful a couple of years in the past, business executives mentioned. “There are a handful of founders constructing path-breaking applied sciences throughout launch, communication and satellites — a validation of that is to see Lightspeed spend money on Pixxel,” Speciale Make investments managing companion Vishesh Rajaram mentioned.
Previous to this, Chennai-based Agnikul raised over $three million in a pre-Collection-A spherical in March from deep-tech traders Pi Ventures and Speciale Make investments. Final 12 months, Bengaluru-based Bellatrix raised round $three million in a pre-Collection-A funding led by IDFC-Parampara, StartupXseed and Bollywood star Deepika Padukone, amongst others.

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