EIF invests EUR 60 million in new fund of Alpine Space Ventures
Munich — InvestEU: EIF provides EUR 60 million for the European NewSpace Fund Alpine Space Ventures. Alpine Space Ventures invests in the fast-growing satellite market. The investment underpins European support for the growing NewSpace commercial ecosystem. The EIF investment is supported by the EU space initiative CASSINI and the InvestEU program, as well as by the German ERP funds. Fund receives additional investment from SpaceX executives to advance NewSpace innovations
The European Investment Fund (EIF) is investing €60 million in Alpine Space Ventures (ASV), a German-based venture capital fund focused on the NewSpace sector. Funding is supported by InvestEU and the European Space Program’s CASSINI Investment Facility, as well as the German government’s European Recovery Program (ERP).
With this investment, ASV’s committed capital exceeds the 100 million euro mark and brings the fund closer to its target of 160 million euros, which is expected to be reached this year.
The term “NewSpace” refers to the private space industry, as opposed to the traditional, mostly government-run space agencies. NewSpace ventures span areas from private launches to high-speed Internet constellations, Earth observation satellites, and ground or space equipment for tracking space debris. In Europe, the NewSpace sector consists of a growing number of private companies and start-ups developing commercial NewSpace technologies.
ASV is rapidly becoming one of the leading NewSpace funds in Europe. The fund focuses on the entire value chain of satellite constellations and Earth observation. To date, ASV has already invested in four companies: small satellite manufacturer Reflex Aerospace, electric propulsion company Morpheus Space, carbon composites expert Blackwave, and Source Energy, a provider of integrated energy solutions for spacecraft.
The fund was founded by Bülent Altan and Joram Voelklein. Bülent Altan is co-CEO of laser communications company Mynaric and is expected to join the Supervisory Board soon (subject to shareholder approval). He was VP Avionics, Guidance, Navigation Control at SpaceX, where he was also chief engineer for Starlink, SpaceX’s satellite Internet constellation now operating in 53 countries. Joram Voelklein, a German entrepreneur and tech investor, already played a crucial role in funding Munich-based NewSpace company Mynaric from its first round of financing to its IPO in 2017.
The European NewSpace ecosystem is gaining momentum. For example, German small launch provider Isar Aerospace recently successfully closed a record 155 million Euro Series C financing round. Altan and Voelklein were both founding investors in the company and participated in several rounds of financing before forming Alpine Space Ventures. Altan is also chairman of the company’s board of directors.