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Smallsat firm BlackSky goes public

BlackSky, which is fielding a small-satellite constellation to monitor rapid changes on Earth for defence and intelligence agencies and commercial customers, has become a publicly held company, raising USD283 million to fuel its growth, the US-based firm announced on 10 September.

BlackSky altered its ownership status by merging with special purpose acquisition company Osprey Technology Acquisition Corp, which already had a listing on the New York Stock Exchange. The combined company has been renamed BlackSky Technology, and its ticker symbol is ‘BKSY'.

BlackSky plans to use the proceeds to expand its workforce, build and launch satellites, and develop more advanced data analytics software. It expects to have 14 satellites on orbit by year's end.

The constellation is scheduled to grow to 23 high-resolution satellites by the end of 2023, providing the ability to monitor “the most important locations on Earth every 60 minutes from dawn to dusk”, according to BlackSky. The company announced in June that it would create a UK office “to address growing international opportunities”.

BlackSky was previously owned by Spaceflight Industries, which last year sold its space launch rideshare business, Spaceflight, to a 50/50 joint venture between Japanese conglomerates Mitsui & Co and Yamasa & Co Spaceflight Industries' other asset, small-satellite builder LeoStella, which is a joint venture with Europe's Thales Alenia Space, is now part of BlackSky.

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