The National | Top SpaceX and Blue Origin engineers wanted for Abu Dhabi space start-up
The National interviews Andrey Maximov, the co-founder of Precious Payload – a space start-up that helps with the planning and execution of satellite missions by taking care of mission and supply chain management – that wants Abu Dhabi to become a logistics and service centre for the space industry:
“I’m in talks with investors here in the UAE and also in the European Union, and I’m looking to raise another $5 million to continue growing our footprint in Abu Dhabi,” he told The National on the sidelines of the International Astronautical Congress in Dubai.
“I’m talking now to the best engineers from SpaceX, from Blue Origin, from OHB in Germany and from the European Union to relocate to Abu Dhabi. And you know what? They like it here because the weather is good.”
The UAE, he said, provides fertile ground for space-focused start-ups.
“If you stay in the United States or in the UK, you’ll be like small fish in pretty huge ponds and it’s not easy to cut through the noise,” he said. “But here, the amount of exposure you get – it really moves the needle for the companies.”
Precious Payload, which set up shop in Abu Dhabi at Hub71 in 2020 with funding from Mubadala Ventures and Silicon Valley investors such as Tim Draper, this week opened up its launch-booking tool to the public in an effort to help would-be satellite operators connect with launch companies and find upcoming flights.
Those interested in sending a satellite into space can outline a mission and get a quote straight from a launch operator.
To keep costs down and waiting times to a minimum, Precious Payload uses its expertise in the industry to help its clients deal with a complex web of regulators governing space launches around the world.
Mr Maximov said the company first created the launch-booking software for internal use.
“Now we want to share it with the public so anyone can use and leverage the infrastructure behind the small satellite industry,” he said.
“We believe that with our software, entrepreneurs can start a space company – even from their dorm room.”
Also, read another The National story about Precious Payload’s founder Andrew Maximov: “The National | Meet the man dreaming of a ‘space bridge’ between UAE and US“.