BroadbandVC/PE

Armada Emerges from Stealth with $55M 

Starlink mission
Image: SpaceX

Armada, an SF-based startup building AI-powered tools to improve data processing, emerged from stealth yesterday with $55M in hand.

Why it matters: The satellite broadband industry is working hard to connect the areas of the world that remain on the unlucky side of the digital divide, but it’s no easy task. Limits in processing capacity and communications prevent industries in much of the world from effectively utilizing satellite connectivity.

Armada is aiming to change that. The company is building a full stack of AI-powered tools for edge computing meant to ease the pain of processing data regardless of where it comes from or where it’s going. Its ecosystem is built on Starlink, which opens the window into a global market of satellite broadband customers.

Deal details: The funding was raised across two rounds led by Founders Fund, Lux Capital, Shield Capital, and 8090 Industries, and included participation from Felicis, Contrary, Valor Equity Partners, Marlinspike, 137 Ventures, Koch Real Estate Investments, and 8VC, among other investors.

“Today, AI—including large language models, multimodal AI and predictive models—is revolutionizing every facet of our lives and work, but not everyone has the same opportunity,” Armada CEO Dan Wright said in a release. “What’s truly astounding is that vast swaths of the world still lack basic internet access, much less the ability to derive tangible value from their data.”

Assembling the fleet: To achieve its AI-powered, edge-computing dreams, Armada has been building out a suite of products. Core to its offerings are its Galleon datacenters, which are self-contained units that can fit on the back of a truck and provide a major chunk of processing capability.

  1. Armada Commander, which acts as the central hub of the ecosystem, allowing users to buy Starlink terminals, Galleon datacenters, and other hardware; connect IoT devices; and download partner applications
  2. Armada Connect, the central operating system for Starlink and other connected devices
  3. Armada Edge, the command center for Galleons, enabling edge computing and data processing anywhere
  4. Armada EdgeAI, a suite of cloud-based AI-enabled software applications that can be deployed either on Galleon hardware or on other platforms

Together, these products are meant to allow industries around the globe to take full advantage of satellite connectivity and easily process vast amounts of data wherever they are.

What’s next? Armada is newly out in the open, but it’s already taken major steps toward deployment, with a team of ~60 in the Bay Area and Seattle, Forbes reported. The company hasn’t pulled in any revenue yet, and next on the to-do list is clinching customer contracts for its tech.

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