A new race to space is happening right above our heads. But the destinations targeted today are not the Moon or Mars. Instead, entrepreneurs, nation states, and large corporations are sending small satellites into Low Earth Orbit (100 to 1,000 miles altitude) to track weather, provide broadband Internet access and telecommunications, support the Internet of Things (IoT), and perform military and security functions.
With so many potential LEO opportunities available, a gold rush mentality has driven scores of entrepreneurs and hundreds of millions of dollars of capital into the sector in recent years. Now, as the market begins to mature, investors are becoming more focused on rapid paths to profitability and less upon innovative technologies.
“The capital markets are no longer interested in funding science projects,” stated Frank Tobin, Executive Chairman of GomSpace North America on The Space Industry Podcast. “They are looking for business models that can be ramped up quickly and achieve cash flow positive status in a reasonable period of time.”