A composite image showing a Falcon 9 rocket booster taking off and landing back near the launch pad a few minutes later.
Private investments in space companies set a new annual record last year, defying industry fears that Covid-19 would halt the dynamism of the past decade a report Monday from New York-based Space Capital.
“With an additional $ 2.9 billion in the fourth quarter, 2020 was a record year for [space infrastructure companies] Chad Anderson, Managing Partner of Space Capital, wrote in the report, “Despite expectations that infrastructure will be hardest hit by the pandemic, 2020 turned out to be a record for investment.”
The quarterly Space Capital report breaks down investment in the industry into three tiers of technology, with space infrastructure encompassing what many normally consider space companies: those that build rockets and satellites like SpaceX, Blue Origin, Relativity Space, Rocket Lab, Planet Labs and Spire Global.
In addition to the record investments, there were 24 exits for infrastructure space companies in 2020, with investors liquidating a value of $ 7.9 billion. An exit occurs when the company owner or investor can sell the company to an external party.
“Almost all of the infrastructure exits in the past decade have been in the form of acquisitions,” wrote Anderson. “The low interest rate environment has acted as a tailwind for M&A activity, with 2020 being the most active year on record.”
Overall, Space Capital found that the infrastructure layer has raised a total of $ 30.9 billion in equity investments since 2011.
The other two layers of the report are application and distribution – the first covers space-dependent services like hailing or navigation, and the second represents terrestrial technologies connected to space-based networks – which were launched in 2020 and $ 15.9 billion respectively. $ 800 million.