One of the most ambitious space startups — Axiom Space — has completed a $130 million Series B funding round, confirming investor confidence in the company — which NASA tapped to add privately-manufactured space station modules to the International Space Station (ISS), according to a Tuesday press release.
Crucially, Axiom Space also plans to build the first entirely-private space station once it's finished with NASA's ISS addition.
Axiom Space raises $130 million toward world's first commercial space station
Axiom Space aims to move on from adding the first private commercial modules to the existing ISS station to developing their own, entirely-private orbital platforms — to support space tourism, scientific research, and much more.
The people slated to join Axiom's first-ever private astronaut launch to the ISS — which will fly next January via SpaceX's Dragon vehicle. Axiom is funding the mission via brokered deals with private spacegoers, and is setting up its own training and mission plan.
Pitting contestants in competition for seats to space
The company is also working with actor Tom Cruise and a development company to produce a competition reality show — which will provide the entertainment of watching contestants compete for a seat on a commercial flight to Axiom's forthcoming station.
With this latest funding round of $130 million, Axiom is rising as a leading broker between transforming aerospace infrastructure and space industry — linking public agencies like NASA to the workhorses of modern space travel, like SpaceX. Having hired in-house expertise to make the jump to private space flights a reality, Axiom is in a unique position.
Axiom could lead world as public-private broker for future of space
And with the $130 million funding round complete, the company will attain greater means to hire more expertise — in addition to accelerating Axiom's capacity to rapidly-produce its ISS modules, and the forthcoming entirely private space station. As of writing, the company — based in Houston — aims to install its modules in the ISS by 2024, and has raised a total of $150.
As the first-ever private space enterprise of its ilk, Axiom will continue to reap major profits once it begins launching private crews into space — who are paying $55 million for trips to the ISS as part of the Ax-1 mission. There's much to expect from the future of space exploration, but commercial endeavors are quickly laying claim to the future of human presence in space.
This was a breaking story and was regularly updated as new information became available.