Plans to build and operate the UK’s only satellite launch site in Shetland have been boosted by over £2m worth of investment.
International private equity firm Leonne International has invested £2,050,000 into the plans which will in turn give them a 20% stake in the business.
The cash injection will be used to help with the development of the launch site and ground station on the island of Unst which is the UK’s most northerly location.
The site was identified as the optimal location in the UK for launching small satellites into space, after an independent report commissioned for the UK space agency.
Shetland Space Centre, who have been developing the plans for two and a half years, aim to have a fully functioning satellite launch facility and ground operations centre by the end of next year.
SSC say the island’s space economy should be seen as a unique and very valuable asset to the UK.
Frank Strang MBE, CEO of Shetland Space Centre, said the partnership with Leonne International will help realise the benefits of space exploration for the UK by creating jobs, revitalising the economy and attracting visitors.
He said: “We are delighted to have Leonne International as a partner in realising the benefits of space exploration for the UK, for Shetland’s economy and establishing Shetland as a northern hub supporting vertical launch and ground station activity.
“Leonne International bring tremendous enthusiasm, drive and belief to the business which will turbo charge an already dynamic and fast moving project.
“Importantly, the investment enables us to proceed with the first stages of gaining the necessary permissions and licenses required to operate the facility and get on with building our launch site and ground station.”