Skyroot gets ₹403 crore funds

Space startup is pioneering the country’s first privately developed space launch vehicles with its flagship Vikram series

September 02, 2022 09:23 pm | Updated 09:23 pm IST - HYDERABAD

Skyroot Aerospace successfully raised US$51 million (₹403 crore) Series-B financing round and is considered to be the largest funding round ever in the Indian space-tech sector on Friday.

GIC, which is one of the most established investors, led the funding round and managing director Mayank Rawat will be joining Skyroot’s Board.

The space startup is pioneering the country’s first privately developed space launch vehicles with its flagship Vikram series (named after the founder of India’s space programme Vikram Sarabhai) uniquely built with an all-carbon-fibre structure to launch up to 800 kg of payloads to Low Earth Orbit (LEO).

“We are proud to welcome one of the world’s leading institutional investors as a long-term partner in our mission to ‘Open Space for All’. This round puts us on a trajectory of hyper-growth by funding all our initial developmental launches, and enables building infrastructure to meet high launch cadence required by our satellite customers. Our objective is to establish ourselves as a provider of best-in-class rocket launch services and the go-to destination for affordable and reliable small satellite launches,” said co-founder and CEO Pawan Kumar Chandana.

“We have validated all three propulsion technologies in our Vikram space launch vehicles, and completed a full duration test of one of our rocket stages in May this year. We are also planning a demonstrator launch to space this year. This round will help us get to full-fledged commercial satellite launch scale within a year from now. We have started booking payload slots for our upcoming launches,” said co-founder and COO Naga Bharath Daka.

The firm has already completed critical milestones towards the development of its commercial space launch vehicles. With this round, Skyroot has expanded its marquee shareholder base including Myntra and CultFit founder Mukesh Bansal, Greenko group founders Anil Chalamalasetty and Mahesh Kolli), Solar Industries India Limited, Google board member Ram Shriram’s Sherpalo Ventures, Neeraj Arora (former WhatsApp global business chief), Wami Capital and others, from previous funding rounds.

The four-year-old Skyroot has successfully built and tested the country’s first privately-developed cryogenic, hypergolic-liquid, and solid fuel-based rocket engines. It is the first startup to sign an MoU with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) for sharing facilities and expertise, said a press release.

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