WARPSPACE Co., Ltd. (Hereinafter “WARPSPACE,” Director CEO: Satoru Tsunemachi), a spin-out space startup from the University of Tsukuba, announced that it has closed Series A round with additional funding of 400M JPY (3.6M USD) from The Space Frontier Fund (operated by Sparks Innovation for Future Co., Ltd.) and KSK Angel Fund LLC, which is led by professional soccer player Keisuke Honda. This funding marks the first close of the Series A round and the second close is scheduled to be in May.
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In addition, as of March 8, WARPSPACE has transitioned to a company with a board of directors. Misuzu Onuki, who is in charge of investment in the Space Frontier Fund and also serves as a member and director of space industry-related organizations, is taking the role of an outside director at WARPSPACE. With the new management structure, we will reinforce our management system. Through a series of efforts, we will accelerate the development of “WarpHub InterSat”, which is scheduled to be launched at the end of 2022.
Comment from CEO
“We would like to express our deepest respect to all those who are supporting the innovation of the space industry during this period of high uncertainty caused by COVID-19. The expansion and sustainable development of human activities have always been achieved by the realization of a strong and stable communication infrastructure. We WARPSPACE aim to establish the position of a top carrier in space communications by realizing the space-space optical communication network relay service ahead of the rest of the world and support the expansion and sustainable development of the global economic zone of the earth.”
Comments from Underwriters
Space Frontier Fund, President of General Partner: Shinichiro KENGAKU
“We believe that the 2020s will be a decade in which the utilization of satellite data will solve various social issues on the earth. We look forward to the foresight of WARPSPACE, which aims to eliminate the communicational bottleneck that is a condition for realizing such a society. We hope that WARPSPACE will open up the very frontier of the Japanese NewSpace industry.”
KSK Angel Fund: Keisuke HONDA
“We believed in two possibilities and decided to invest in WARPSPACE. The first possibility is that space optical communication network of WARPSPACE can solve various social problems such as poverty and environmental problems. The second is that we can contribute to the development of the space industry. It’s natural to think that it’s unlikely to succeed in space business at this point. Nevertheless, only those who believed in such a small possibility and continued to challenge at any time have realized their dreams.”
About “WarpHub Intersat”
WarpHub InterSat is the world’s first inter-satellite optical communication relay network service using small optical relay satellites. We are aiming to launch the service in 2023. The number of satellites is increasing exponentially in Low Earth Orbit (LEO), which is between 500 to 800 km from the surface of the earth. WarpHub Intersat enables the satellites to constantly communicate with the ground stations with high-speed optical communication, which also enables the satellite operators to access more satellite data in near real-time, which contributes to the realization of a sustainable global economy of the earth.
[WARPSPACE Co., Ltd.]
Established in 2016. WARPSPACE has launched three communication satellites including the one made in the predecessor university project. In addition to our expertise in satellite engineering, we are developing our space business by taking advantage of our partnerships with research institutes such as JAXA and the abundant experimental and test facilities owned by Tsukuba Science City.