Startups

Indian spacetech startup Skyroot has raised over $4 million in a round led by one of Google’s earliest backers – Business Insider India


  • Indian space startup Skyroot Aerospace has raised $4.5 million in a bridge round.
  • The round is led by one of the earlier backers of Google, Ram Shriram, through his VC firm Sherpalo Ventures.
  • Skyroot Aerospace had previously announced that it is in talks to raise $40 million.

Indian space startup Skyroot Aerospace has raised $4.5 million in a bridge round led by one of the earlier backers of Google, Ram Shriram, through his venture capital (VC) firm Sherpalo Ventures.

The bridge round was co-led by Wami Capital, with participation from former WhatsApp executive Neeraj Arora and former Google executive Amit Singhal. A bridge round is an intermediary financing ahead of a larger funding round.

“India has long been a leader in rocket launch capability, especially at significantly lower cost. Skyroot takes that technical strength to the next level, with its innovative and cost-effective space launch capability, disrupting the status quo in the global launch market,” said Shriram of Sherpalo Ventures.

The company was founded by former Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) scientists Pawan Kumar Chandana and Naga Bharath Daka in 2018.

Skyroot Aerospace had previously announced that it is in
talks to raise $40 million in order to fund its commercial operations that are scheduled to launch next year. The company will raise this round with both new and existing investors.

The company had announced a
$11 million funding round in the first half of 2021, the same day its rival Agnikul raised the same amount. This was the largest round raised by any Indian spacetech startup.

Skyroot is backed by Greenko Group founders Anil Kumar Chalamalasetty and Mahesh Kolli. Other notable investors also include former Graph Ventures, Worldquant Ventures and Mukesh Bansal, who had earlier founded Myntra and Cure.fit.

The three-year-old startup is the first Indian private aerospace company to successfully test a fully cryogenic rocket engine named Dhawan-1 in honour of eminent Indian scientist Satish Dhawan.

It will not license or sell its cryogenic engine technology to any other partners, but will use it to boost its operations. It will partner with other companies that have the capability of manufacturing satellites, mainly in earth observation and communication satellites, and help them launch it to space.

Hyderabad-based Skyroot claims that it will probably be the cheapest satellite launch vehicle in the world.


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