Russia's only private space company, Dauria Aerospace, teams with yet another American firm in biggest deal yet
It's not a stock trade, but it is a sign of things to come in the Russian space business. Tiny Dauria Aerospace in Moscow sold two Perseus-brand micro satellites to earth imaging firm Aquila Space in Moffett Field, Calif. Total value of the contract, not counting licensing fees, was put at $6 million, Dauria said.
Russia’s space agency, Roscosmos, used to be only game in town. But in October, the government said that Roscosmos, like NASA in the U.S., will now allow private companies access to the market of space services within four short years, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said.
“By 2020, we plan to form an effective system of support for Russian corporations on the market of space services and allow private companies onto the market,” Rogozin said during a tech forum in Moscow in October.
He did not say whether foreign firms like SpaceX in the U.S. would be allowed to bid for projects. The U.S. and Russia have an open relationship on space exploration. Both share equal responsibility on the International Space Station, regardless of geopolitical spats on Earth.
Unlike in the United States where private companies are actively developing a market for space services, from rockets to launch pads and satellites, Russia is currently exclusively state-owned.
Dauria manufacturers micro-satellites in Skolkovo, a town outside of Moscow. It is no stranger to U.S. space companies and investors.
The four year old firm signed an agreement with International Launch Services in Washington DC back in April. It received $20 million in Series B funding in 2013 from 12BF Global Ventures in New York. Dauria is still a portfolio company at 12BF.