Miratlas, from BLAST 2021 cohort, secures 2 million euros seed funding
Spacetech: Miratlas secures 2 million euros seed funding from Karista, Région Sud Investissement and private investors
Miratlas, a leader in atmospheric turbulence and cloud cover characterization, has raised 2 million euros in seed funding. The round was led by Karista and supported by Région Sud Investissement and private investors. This major initial funding is a key step for Miratlas which seeks to build industrial capacities to deploy its instruments globally and step up its development.
Founded in 2018 and today headquartered in Pertuis, Miratlas is supported by the Pôle Optitec and part of the BLAST program’s first cohort within Starbust accelerator. Miratlas deploys a worldwide network of measurement stations allowing precise cloud and atmospheric turbulence monitoring by the analysis of starlight and sunlight. This technology, derived from astronomy, provides real-time and high-precision data which is critical to the future of high-speed broadband telecommunication satellites: Laser Comms (Free Space Optical Communication).
Miratlas already cooperates on several innovative projects with the CNES, the French spatial agency. Its technology has convinced several major players in the Spacetech industry around the world.
Laser communications, already in deployment for intersatellite communication, provides over a 100 times more capacity than radio which is a bottleneck for upcoming New Space mega-constellations and drives a premium on costs on limited frequency bands. Furthermore, laser communication is mandatory for global quantum key distribution essential to cybersecurity.
However, direct laser comms between Earth and Space are highly susceptible to atmospheric conditions: clouds, absorption, and turbulences, which are characterized by Miratlas’ instruments. With this unique offer, Miratlas is the first player in the Spacetech industry to provide all the information necessary to design, establish and maintain laser communication.
The data on turbulences obtained by Miratlas also offers a better understanding of our atmosphere and of the impact of climate change on its stability as well as on pollutant dispersion. This first 2 million euros funding will allow Miratlas to build industrial capacity to deploy its instruments worldwide, invest in research and development and broaden its service offering.
“We are delighted to announce Karista spacetech fund’s, CosmiCapital, very first investment, made in the highly innovative field of optical technology and quantum keys, which are the future of communication. We are proud to support such a talented team working on this world class project, which proves that the Spacetech industry is thriving with an increasing number of potential real-world applications”, commented Emmanuel Daugeras, investment director and Yvan-Michel Ehkirch, managing partner at Karista.
“REGION SUD INVESTISSEMENT is truly delighted to invest in MIRATLAS. The company is indeed already ahead in the Spacetech industry. It has a proven track record convincing market leaders and we are convinced that its development potential will soon make it one of the most promising start-ups in our region. The region is committed to encouraging this promising industry (contract with the CNES signed in 2018, competitivity hubs, research centres, contractors…) and there is no doubt that the local ecosystem will allow Miratlas to grow even further in years to come. We are also very happy to be investing alongside Karista for the first time as the fund’s specialization in this industry will doubtlessly help Miratlas”, added Pierre Joubert, CEO of Région Sud Investissement.
“We are very happy for Miratlas, which today celebrates reaching a new and highly symbolic milestone in its development thanks to trustworthy partners, whose investments prove that a true space industry funding scheme is currently emerging In France. With its very advanced and pathbreaking technology, Miratlas is the perfect illustration of the way we seek to assist the most promising start-ups and entrepreneurial research projects grow in their early days, by leading them to the right partners and investors who can help them unlock a phase of exponential growth”, said Christelle Astorg-Lepine, head of the BLAST at Starburst.
Investor counsel: Géraldine Vignat (Vignat-Avocats), Sandrine Paris (Sparislaw)
Company counsel: Julien Loth (Gramond et Associés)
Karista, is an independent Venture Capital company specializing in early-stage, particularly in the Digital, Deeptech, Healthcare and Spacetech fields. Karista has financed companies such as Sequans Communication (NYSE Listed SQNS) Nanobiotix (Nasdaq Listed NBTX), Comitéo (sold to Natixis). Since its creation in 2001, Karista has supported more than 90 companies in Europe and generates a sustainable performance for its investors. CosmiCapital, Karista’s Newspace fund, invests in the Spacetech economy currently boosted by the growing amount of available data to build innovative solutions for the future. As a strategic partner to entrepreneurs, the Karista team is recognized for its complementary skills and network.
Founded in 2018, Miratlas is headquartered in Pertuis (Vaucluse) and is hosted on the premises of the Pays d’Aix innovation hub. Miratlas deploys a worldwide atmospheric data measurement system that will be vital to the future of optical laser communication and quantum key distribution.
About Région Sud Investissement
Région Sud Investissement is the regional investment vehicle created in 2010 by the Région Sud to support the emergence and development of high-growth companies. Région Sud Investissement has a budget of €146 million, 42% of which is supported by the European Union’s ERDF. RSI has financed 335 companies and is about to launch a new capital tool called “RSI React EU” designed to strengthen the equity of companies that have suffered from the health crisis.
About the BLAST program, led by Starburst
BLAST, for “Boost and Leverage Aerospace & defense Technologies”, is a public-private consortium led by Starburst in collaboration with ONERA, SATT Paris-Saclay and Ecole Polytechnique and with the support of BPI France and several major industrial players in the Aerospace and Defense (ASD) sector. Thanks to the pooling of its members’ respective skills and ecosystems, the program’s purpose is to create and consolidate a pool of mature research projects and startups able to participate in major French and European programs and with marketable products while these projects are in the pre-seed phase.
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