RBC Signals gets set for satellite data boom

Redmond, Wash.-based RBC Signals says it’s closed on a $1.2 million funding round that’s meant to put the venture in position to meet the growing demand for satellite ground station services.

“One of the primary things we’re doing is positioning ourselves for the future,” RBC Signals’ founder and CEO, Christopher Richins, told GeekWire today. “We already see an uptick in demand.”

Richins said the newly reported equity round, which he characterized as a “late seed round,” brings the six-year-old startup’s total investment to $3.2 million. A filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission says 15 investors took part in the round.

Richins declined to identify individual investors, but he said the round included new capital as well as debt conversions that are primarily aimed at structuring foreign investment to satisfy anticipated U.S. government requirements.

RBC Signals has agreements to use more than 80 antennas at more than 50 locations in more than 20 countries to communicate with orbiting satellites. Most of those agreements take advantage of spare bandwidth for data delivery.


How AWS Ground Station is moving the needle

Capella Space satellite
An artist’s conception shows Capella Space’s radar satellite in orbit. (Capella Space Illustration)

LAS VEGAS – Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos says his company has gotten so big that it has to branch out into business lines that “move the needle,” like the recently revealed Project Kuiper broadband satellite constellation.

But Project Kuiper isn’t Amazon’s only potentially needle-moving satellite venture: Amazon Web Services’ effort to create a network of ground stations and an easy-to-use satellite control interface is a similarly big bet for the Seattle-based company.

At least that’s how Shayn Hawthorne, general manager for AWS Ground Station, sees the situation.

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