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Satnews Daily
March 21st, 2017

Rocket Lab Raises $75 Million in Funding... Ready to Revolutionize Satellite Launches

Rocket Lab has succeeded at closing their Series D financing for $75 million that was led by Data Collective, with additional investment from Promus Ventures and an undisclosed investor, and with renewed participation from Bessemer Venture Partners, Khosla Ventures and K1W1. The closure of the round brings the total funding Rocket Lab has received to date to $148 million, with the company now valued in excess of $1 billion (USD). 

Rocket Lab, a private American-New Zealand space company’s mission is to provide frequent satellite launch opportunities, which will revolutionize the ability of satellite companies to reach orbit—many of these companies currently have had assets sitting on the shelves for years, waiting for launch.  

Today also marks the opening of Rocket Lab’s new headquarters in Huntington Beach, California. The company has had a presence in the Los Angeles area since 2013 and looks forward to expanding its engineering and business units in the 150,000-square foot facility. Rocket Lab remains committed to also growing and expanding its presence in Auckland, New Zealand, which supports Rocket Lab’s Launch Complex 1 on New Zealand’s Mahia Peninsula.

Located on New Zealand’s Mahia Peninsula, Launch Complex 1 is set to enable the highest frequency of space launches in history. The facility will be the primary site for launches of Rocket Lab’s Electron vehicle, designed to lift a 150 kg payload to a 500 km sun-synchronous orbit. Launches from the site can access a uniquely wide range of orbital inclinations from 39 degrees through sun-synchronous.

Rocket Lab CEO and founder Peter Beck shared, “Closing this funding round comes on the heels of a big year that saw Rocket Lab finish construction on the world’s first private, orbital launch site and delivery of the funding will enable us to scale up production of Electron to meet the continued high demand we’re seeing from the growing small satellite industry.”

With today's announcement Beck also welcomed Data Collective Managing Partner Matt Ocko to Rocket Lab’s board of directors, joining existing members David Cowan (Bessemer Venture Partners), Sven Strohband (Khosla Ventures) and Scott Smith (Iridium Satellites).

Matt Ocko of Data Collective said, “Currently, small satellite companies wait years to get on orbit, often at the mercy and schedules of larger payloads—and at extortionate costs. With Rocket Lab, this huge backlog now has access to a high-frequency, quality launch service that will take customers where they want to go, when they want to fly. The commercial and humanitarian applications this will open up are endless, and it should unleash a torrent of financing for space innovation.”

Mike Collett of Promus Ventures stated, “It’s a privilege to work with the experienced team at Rocket Lab. Launch has been the prime barrier to market entry in small satellites, and we firmly believe Rocket Lab will successfully fill this void with its proprietary technology platform, vertically-integrated supply chain and private orbital launch range.”