HomeBussinessUK space company Orbex raises additional £16 million as it ramps up...

UK space company Orbex raises additional £16 million as it ramps up development of Prime rocket


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UK space company Orbex has announced the raising of an additional 16.7 million GBP after completing a Series C round worth 40 million GBP in 2022.

The funding will help Orbex ramp up the development of its Prime 19-metre-long, two-stage rocket, which has been designed to transport small satellites into Low Earth Orbit. Pre-launch testing is currently underway, with Orbex now working to ensure full readiness and scalability for its launch period.

Orbex has two active patents in a number of European countries and the United States covering various parts of its rocket technology. It is powered by a renewable bio-fuel, which allows the rocket to reduce carbon emissions significantly compared to other similarly sized rockets being developed elsewhere around the world. The company has also been leaning on metal additive manufacturing technology to support the development of its engines for several years. In that time, Orbex has adopted technologies from both SLM Solutions and AMCM.

“Orbex is one of only two space rocket manufacturers in the UK, and the only one to also operate its own spaceport,” said Phillip Chambers, CEO of Orbex. “Our technology is pivotal in making the UK a hub for European orbital launch, and we are entering a critical phase of development. We are building a sustainable, cost-effective launch vehicle to compete with the best of Europe’s spaceflight manufacturers. This additional funding will support our goal to push on into an operational launch phase, and scale our business when the time comes.”

Investors involved in the deal include 10.5m GBP follow-on investment from the Scottish National Investment Bank, venture capital firms Octopus Ventures, BGF, Heartcore, the Export & Investment Fund of Denmark (EIFO) and a number of corporate and angel investors. CEO Chambers is himself an investment, injecting cash into the business during the Series C round in 2022, and forming a new leadership team with and former Director General of the Spanish Space Agency Miguel Belló Mora in January.

Having secured the additional 16m GBP, Orbex will soon begin raising cash through its Series D funding round, which will aim to ‘secure its long-term prospects’ as the ‘leading orbital launch business in Europe.’

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