Satellite imagery startup Albedo closes $10M seed round

While most startups today are creating software, not every upstart enterprise is taking a code-only approach to building a business. Some of today’s most ambitious startups are aiming quite a bit higher.

Albedo is one such company. The recent Y Combinator graduate wants to build a constellation of low-orbit satellites that can provide higher-resolution Earth imaging than what is generally available today. And it just closed a $10 million seed round.

Initialized Capital led the investment, which also saw participation from JetstreamLiquid2 Ventures and Soma Capital

TechCrunch has had its eye on Albedo since its Y Combinator run, discussing the firm’s approach to providing what it describes as “aerial-quality” images — though they are taken from space instead of a drone or aircraft. In more technical parlance, Albedo wants to provide 10-centimeter visual imagery and 2-meter thermal imagery.

According to Topher Haddad, Albedo’s co-founder and CEO, the company aims to launch its first satellite in 2024 and bring its full constellation in orbit by 2027. With eight satellites, the company can provide daily image revisits; with 24, it can do that three times each day, though the eight-satellite fleet will be an early milestone for the startup, according to its CEO.

Why hasn’t someone already tried to build what Albedo is working on? The company, Haddad explained, has been made possible in part due to advances in the larger space economy, and the fact that major cloud providers AWS and Azure have both built out services to (Read more...)