PARIS — Solidifying its presence in Europe and Asia, Spire Global raised more than $58 million in in two transactions, bringing its total funding to nearly $200 million since 2013.
The latest financing, announced Sept. 25, is an $18.24-million grant from Scotland’s national economic development agency, Scottish Enterprise, and a $40-million Series D round led by funds managed by Japanese-based companies Global Public Offering Fund, Itochu Group and Mitsui Global Investment.
Spire operates a fleet of more than 80 satellites in low Earth orbit with payloads that provide Automatic Identification System (AIS) ship and aircraft tracking and meteorological data.
Headquartered in San Francisco, Spire has a manufacturing plant in Glasgow, Scotland, and offices in Luxembourg — whose Luxembourg Future Fund led Spire’s $70-million Series C round in November 2017 — and in Singapore.
Scottish Enterprise said its grant of 14.7 million British pounds ($18.24 million) “is one of the largest funding packages ever provided” by the agency.
Spire will use the funds for a new 40,000-square-foot (3,716 square-meter) facility in Glasgow and has promised it will expand its work force by five fold — to 320 from today’s 60 employees — within five years.
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said Spire is a major reason — AAC Clyde Space of Glasgow is another — why Scotland builds more satellites “than any other country in Europe.”
“Spire Global’s expansion sends a strong message that even in these uncertain times, Scotland remains open for business and has the potential to be Europe’s leading space nation.”
Like the rest of the United Kingdom, Scotland is working to mitigate the effects of Brexit on its technology sector. The British government has recently said it will increase its investment in the 22-nation European Space Agency (ESA), which is not part of the European Union, and would work to enable non-British nationals to remain in the country after Brexit: http://bit.ly/2kQWyfz
Spire Chief Executive Peter Platzer said “Glasgow has been a fantastic location for us, with exceptional talent and people with a phenomenal ‘can-do’ attitude and true grit.”
The $40 million Series D financing brings Spire’s total funding since a 2013 seed round to about $200 million.
Global Public Offering (GPO) Fund, while based in New York, said its mission is to “harness Asia-Pacific public capital markets” for companies planning initial public offerings of stock.