On today’s Pathfinder, we sit down with Emiliano Kargieman, who is CEO and cofounder of Satellogic ($SATL). Originally started in Buenos Aires, the now-global ~$500M microsat operator is deploying a LEO constellation and aims to develop a high-res, live catalog of Earth.
By the end of 2023, Satellogic hopes to have 60+ satellites in orbit (and 200+ by 2025). The company made $4.2 million in 2021, the year it began selling and delivering imagery to customers.
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0:00 – Intro
2:05 – Satellogic’s presence all over the world, from Buenos Aires to the Netherlands
4:35 – What does operating a multinational satellite company look like during a global pandemic?
6:34 – Emiliano has had the entrepreneurial bug from a young age, since he was programming computers as a 9 year old
10:42 – The inception story of Satellogic, building a more efficient way to observe Earth and remap the planet, all the way up until 2020
14:49 – What characteristics set Satellogic apart from other smallsat constellations?
20:22 – Sub meter resolution optical cameras and multispectral cameras being used in object identification and classification in Earth observation (EO)
24:53 – What role do sales and marketing play in reaching new customers in commercial markets?
31:01 – Emiliano’s list of technology and financial trends that made his business possible, from the canonical drop in launch costs to the standardization of launch interfaces and more
37:03 – What are your biggest bottlenecks or constraints: resolution limits or government regulations?
43:45 – What is a DSC, or dedicated satellite constellation? How does it tie in with space-as-a-service? And why might national governments want to tap DSCs?
46:33 – Satellogic’s operations over Ukraine and their efforts to aid the country and other NATO members
50:11 – Being a non-US company listed in the United States, and the positives and negatives of the decision to go public via SPAC (special purpose acquisition company) merger
55:12 – Emiliano’s hottest take, or most contrarian view, on the space industry…His answer The future of the space economy will match the economy on Planet Earth
56:27 – Will Emiliano’s daughter go on to work in the space industry?
57:26 – Advice for students, especially from the Global South, who are looking to break into the space industry