Ability to see different planets and faraway places has always sparked human interest, naturally driving technological advancement in the area, from invention of the first telescopes to highly advanced imaging satellites producing high resolution images for use in many fields such as, oceanography, meteorology, biodiversity conservation, forestry and warfare.
Veoware Space, a UK-BE startup, is a technology & data company which democratises very high-resolution satellite imagery for its customers, enabling further data analytics and faster decision-making.
The startup participated and pitched at this year’s EBN Congress pitching competition, winning the first place in the space category.
While working in a small satellite manufacturer, QinetiQ, and on European Space Agency (ESA)’s projects, Julien Tallineau, Veoware Space’s co-founder and CEO (on the left), got fascinated by commercial space, wanting to bring high-satellite imagery to everyone willing to understand the “bigger picture”, such as journalists reporting in warfare or environmental activists capturing deforestation. At that time, he came up with the idea to produce very high-resolution imagery replacing commonly used large satellites used on high altitudes with smaller ones flying at lower altitudes. This change would dramatically lower the cost of satellite production enabling more people to have access to such imagery. With this idea, Julien quit his job and teamed up with his best friend from university, Julien Demonty, and Veoware Space was born.
Due to typical traditional manufacturing cycles (time to orbit of approximately 5 years) and total development cost in the 400 EUR million range, there is a shortage of such very high-resolution satellites, typically owned only by governments and large corporations. As a result, the imagery price remains extremely high and the market is thus either under-served or comprises entirely un-served segments. Julien noticed this gap in the market and decided to tackle it.
Veoware Space solves the problem by timely delivering more affordable very high-resolution imagery data at a much higher revisit time than traditional satellite operators.
Veoware Space democratises satellite imagery by developing smaller satellites (<500kg versus typical 1-3 tones) and using them in very low-Earth orbit satellite constellation (even lower altitude from the Earth than the International Space Station, i.e. < 400km). In this way, the cost to build such a satellite is much lower, while the quality of the imagery is even higher, and hence, imaging price comes down by a factor of 5 at least. Moreover, in a yet in satellite imagery innovative business model Veoware Space leases the use of satellites, so instead of asking the companies to purchase the satellite they can just use the services when needed.
Veoware Space – lower, better, cheaper
Veoware Space Services in a Nutshell
Veoware Space and How Things Will Work
One of the main challenges VEOWARE faced was how to explain its uniqueness both in terms of technology and regarding its business to customers. As the startup is a pioneer in making high-resolution satellite imagery cheaper and more accessible via its innovative approach the team had to devote considerable effort to explain benefits of using VEOWARE's next-gen services.
Furthermore, as Julien Tallineau mentioned, 'another challenge was finding the right team: passionate about the idea, strong expertise and willingness to invest time and even money to make it work! And, I was lucky enough to come across such great people. Actually, one of the teammates is Joerg Kreisel (CEO, JKIC), our mentor, coach and chief advisor from the very beginning. who spotted the EBN Congress's opportunity which ended up being an amazing experience for us'.
As every startup, Veoware Space team struggled when establishing the company – they managed to get 30,000 EUR using FFF 'financing model' (friends, family and fools), afterwards closing a first 150k GBP with UK-based business angels. However, while going the boostrap finance path, the company has also secured contracts in the tens of million Euro range, protected its IP and currently takes its technology to the next level building value for its forthcoming financing seed round.
Veoware Space – EBN Congress pitching winner
Veoware Space pitched in 'space' category of EBN Congress pitching competition, presenting their idea in 3 minutes to EBN Board Member Frank Salzgeber, ESA/ESTEC’s representative, Marc Serres, Head of Space Affairs at Ministry of Economy (Luxembourg), a panel of corporates working in the sector (SES Satellites and GomSpace), and in front of investors and business angels coming from Seraphim Capital and The Luxembourg Business Angel Network (LBAN).
The judging panel chose Veoware Space as the winner among 3 others startups competing in the category.
Julien Tallineau, Veoware Space’s co-founder and CEO, pitched at the competition, and he was very happy to receive the award and to have the opportunity to attend EBN Congress:
'I loved the idea of pitching in cinema setting. The network and location were great – all important players investing in space were there – corporates, investors, even Luxembourg’s ministry of economy.'
Veoware Space’s Chief Adviser Joerg Kreisel (CEO,JKIC) receiving award from Diego De Biasio (CEO of EBN Member Technoport SA) and EBN CEO Javier Echarri.
Veoware Space has received a grant from UK government and Brussels region, and it is currently exploring collaboration with ESA. By next year they plan to raise over 2 million euros to build a satellite and explore markets in the US, Europe and Asia. As Google is one of the largest buyers of satellite imagery with purpose of integrating them in Google Maps, Veoware Space hopes to reach the company in the near future. In order to reach Google, they plan to first collaborate with some of the key players in the market such as Airbus and DigitalGlobe and establish partnerships with them.
'We are passionate about creating unbiased world by delivering perspectives using very high-resolution satellite imagery, bringing them down to Earth, for everyone, everyday!'– Veoware Space team
Want to learn more about Veoware Space or interested in supporting them in their stellar journey?
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