'Billionaires in Space' Is Boring; 2022 Will See Entire Industries Go Galactic

Van Espahbodi
As co-founder and managing partner of Starburst, Van Espahbodi is championing today’s aerospace renaissance, uniting early-stage technology innovators with private investment to modernize infrastructure in mobility, communications and intelligence. Van launched Starburst in the US in 2015, operating globally today with offices in Los Angeles, Paris, Munich, San Francisco, Singapore, Tel Aviv, Abu Dhabi and Montreal. His team works alongside 500+ technology startups developing new aircraft, spacecraft, satellites, drones, sensors, autonomy, robotics and much more.
'Billionaires in Space' Is Boring; 2022 Will See Entire Industries Go Galactic
GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota

This last year was a watershed for the commercial space economy. An incredible amount of capital was invested in the new aerospace economy, surpassing the likes of legacy space heavyweights Boeing and Airbus. The year saw incredible financial exits from California-based companies Momentus, Planet, Rocket Lab and Astra, among others (Long Beach-based Virgin Orbit is set to go public in 2022). And it captured the public’s attention with billionaires floating in microgravity.


The ensuing media made instant celebrities of space-tech leaders and spurred investors across industries to begin considering how research and development in space could benefit them and their companies.

Commercial space players, now beholden to the public following the SPAC craze, will do their best to keep their promises and survive in a Wild West marketplace where only the best survive.

In 2022, space will bring yet unimagined benefits back to Earth and dramatically reshape other industries. In recent years, aerospace research has brought us civilization defining technologies like Internet, automated voice recognition and language translation, and GPS. 2022 will open a new chapter of consumer connectivity, introducing a DirectTV-meets-high-speed internet that will remove the physical barriers of work, inviting entrepreneurship by anyone, regardless of where they live. The boundaries of biotech and fiber-optic manufacturing will expand as manufacturing in space industrializes. And a new level of data analytics, once available only to powerful governments, will allow scientists and entrepreneurs to better observe Earth and unlock value for companies and individuals around the world.

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Energy Shares Gears Up To Bring Equity Crowdfunding to Retail Investors

David Shultz

David Shultz reports on clean technology and electric vehicles, among other industries, for dot.LA. His writing has appeared in The Atlantic, Outside, Nautilus and many other publications.

Energy Shares Gears Up To Bring Equity Crowdfunding to Retail Investors
Photo by Red Zeppelin on Unsplash

The Inflation Reduction Act contains almost $400 billion in funding for clean energy initiatives. There’s $250 billion for energy projects. $23 billion for transportation and EVs. $46 billion for environment. $21 billion for agriculture, and so on. With so much cash flowing into the sector, the possibilities for investment and growth are gigantic.

These investment opportunities, however, have typically been inaccessible for everyday retail investors until much later in a company’s development–after an IPO, usually. Meaning that the best returns are likely to be captured by banks and other institutions who have the capital and financing to invest large sums of money earlier in the process.

That’s where Pasadena-based Energy Shares comes in. The company wants to help democratize access to these investment opportunities and simultaneously give early-stage utility-scale energy projects another revenue stream.

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Why These Ukrainian Entrepreneurs Are Making LA Their Home

Aisha Counts
Aisha Counts is a business reporter covering the technology industry. She has written extensively about tech giants, emerging technologies, startups and venture capital. Before becoming a journalist she spent several years as a management consultant at Ernst & Young.
Why These Ukrainian Entrepreneurs Are Making LA Their Home
Joey Mota

Fleeing war and chasing new opportunities, more than a dozen Ukrainian entrepreneurs have landed in Los Angeles, finding an unexpected community in the city of dreams. These entrepreneurs have started companies that are collectively worth more than $300 million, in industries ranging from electric vehicle charging stations to audience monetization platforms to social networks.

Dot.LA spent an evening with this group of Ukrainian citizens, learning what it was like to build startups in Ukraine, to cope with the unimaginable fear of fleeing war, and to garner the resilience to rebuild.

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