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Apr 29, 2020

The US government is helping get cash to private space companies, replacing frozen venture capital

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, business, economics, finance, government, military

Investment in the fast-growing space industry was booming well into the first quarter of 2020 but private capital has largely frozen as the coronavirus pandemic strikes the U.S., leading both civil and military agencies to step up funding for corporate partners.

“We kicked into high gear as soon as it was apparent a lot of companies were not going to be able to conduct business as usual due to distancing requirements,” Mike Read, International Space Station business and economic development manager at NASA’s Johnson Space Center, told CNBC.

U.S. equity investment in space companies totaled $5.4 billion across 36 deals in the first quarter, according to a report Friday by NYC-based firm Space Capital. But the second quarter is likely to just see a fraction of that investment, according to Space Capital managing partner Chad Anderson, as deal flow in the U.S. will follow China’s path. Chinese investment in space was climbing by record amounts until the first quarter, when “activity in China was basically shut off,” Anderson said.

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