Japanese Startup Raised $90m for Moon Mission: Should Musk Be Afraid?

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Japanese startup ispace raised $90 million for its moon mission, set a record and smashed SpaceX. Want to know more – keep reading.

ispace-startup-90m-photo

Source: ispace

New challenge for SpaceX?

ispace is a Tokyo-based private company that aims to explore the moon and to make Earth and moon one system. It’s ambitious plan to be the first Japanese company to land on the moon.

As it was reported in the company’s press release, ispace raised $90.2 million in the latest round funding. That’s a Japanese record for “Series A” funding — the round of financing that comes after the initial “seed capital” — and the most Series A money ever raised across the global commercial space sector, according to ispace representatives.

The Innovation Network Corporation of Japan led the Series A round, which also included the Development Bank of Japan, Suzuki Motor and Japan Airlines. To compare, previously SpaceX was the leader for highest amount with $12.1 million raised.

Big plans

The company announced two moon missions in the next three years.

The first, targeted for early 2019, will launch the ispace lander to lunar orbit, where it will study the moon’s surface.

“With this funding, ispace will begin the development of a lunar lander to establish a flexible and regular lunar transportation system, and lead the exploration and development of the lunar surface through micro-robotic systems,” company founder and CEO Takeshi Hakamada said in a statement.

The second, in late 2020, involves putting the lander onto the lunar surface and deploying multiple rovers, company representatives said. They also added this lander will be capable of carrying 66 lbs. (30 kilograms) of payload, including the rovers — which themselves can each accommodate about 11 lbs. (5 kg).

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Japanese Startup Raised $90m for Moon Mission: Should Musk Be Afraid?
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Japanese startup ispace raised $90 million for its moon mission, set a record and smashed SpaceX. Want to know more - keep reading.
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