Spire gets €20m in EU debt financing for nanosatellite network

The European Investment Bank (EIB), the long-term lending institution of the European Union, has announced a venture debt financing agreement of up to €20 million with satellite data company Spire Global.

Spire Global operates a constellation of more than 100 nanosatellites used to forecast the weather and track maritime and aviation movements. The financing will back capital expenditure and research and development (R&D) activities to hire new staff, further develop the technology and expand the company’s data and analytics programmes.

“Our satellite constellation is monitoring every point on the planet in near real-time, producing unique datasets that can be processed into decision-making tools that help to solve some of the world’s biggest problems, such as achieving net zero emission targets, illegal fishing, excessive fuel consumption, early warning of extreme weather events, and more efficient movement of global resources,” said Peter Platzer, CEO and founder of Spire.

“Europe has exceptional high-tech talent, including in data analytics, AI/ML, and product development, making it an ideal location for Spire to scale our team to meet new customer demands through product innovation.”

“We applaud EIB’s decision to fill the growth financing gap between early stage and mature companies, which positions Europe as a competitive location for technology start-ups and particularly attractive for business scaling.”

The transaction follows the EIB’s commitment to strengthen support for European space start-ups and cooperate with space agencies such as the European Space Agency (ESA). The funding agreement is backed by the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI).

“Like many other sectors, space is undergoing disruptive changes driven by innovation and digitalisation. We shouldn’t miss the opportunity to play a decisive role in the emerging New Space industry and reap the many benefits it can bring to the whole economy and Europe’s future competitiveness. I am therefore particularly pleased about our agreement with Spire,” said EIB Vice-President Teresa Czerwińska.

“For the first time ever, the EIB is directly supporting a highly innovative, disruptive start-up in the New Space sector. It shows that the European Union can attract late-stage, fast-growing companies that develop new business models and commercialise new technologies in sectors that will define our future.”

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Rob O'Dwyer

Rob is Chief Network Officer and one of the founders of Smart Maritime Network. He also serves as Chairman of the Smart Maritime Council. Rob has worked in the maritime technology sector since 2005, managing editorial for a range of leading publications in the transport and logistics sector. Get in touch by email by clicking here, or on LinkedIn by clicking here.

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