Kepler Communications, a Techstars Seattle graduate building telecom infrastructure for space, just secured $5 million in seed funding. New York venture capital firm IA Ventures led the round. The Toronto-based startup will use the funds to grow its team and launch two tiny satellites into space in the next 15 months.
How tiny? They’re roughly the size of a loaf of bread. The “CubeSats” are part of Kepler’s strategy to develop low-cost, replaceable satellites. They plan to swap out the spacecraft frequently, allowing them to adapt to new technologies faster than traditional satellites.
“Since our satellites are small they’re significantly cheaper and can be replaced with newer technology every two to three years,” said Kepler CEO Mina Mitry. “Compared to conventional satellites that would operate for eight years or more with dated technology.”
Kepler Communications took part in the Techstars Seattle startup incubator this year. Techstars, along with Liquid 2 Ventures, Globalive Capital, BDC, and several angels, also participated in the seed round.
The startup’s CubeSats are designed to relay information, like asset tracking, photos, and weather predictions, in real-time.
“Today, space-borne data can be hours delayed causing critical information to be missed,” said Mitry. “There are industries that can’t rely on satellite data because of the latency.”
Kepler’s seed round was oversubscribed, and the startup has raised $5.5 million to date.