Satellite images of the earth are quite pervasive in our lives, from everyday uses like mapping to an immense and growing number of commercial use cases like crop monitoring or insurance underwriting. But as useful and widely used present-day satellite imagery is, a whole class of use cases is still held back by insufficient image resolution. This is why Initialized invested in Albedo, we believe they are on the path to providing the highest commercially available imagery of the surface of the earth. We’re happy to announce we led their $10M seed round with participation from Liquid 2 Ventures, Jetstream, Rebel Fund, and others.
An extreme amount of detail goes into building satellites, launching them into space, orchestrating their orbits, and tasking them to capture images of the earth. Doing so as a startup is quite ambitious and requires a world-class, multidisciplinary, technical team. When we met Topher, AJ, and Winston we were quickly convinced that they were a team with the ambition and domain expertise to pull this off.
Their backgrounds specifically position them to address the pain points that have held back high-resolution imagery – the first and foremost being that it has been prohibitively complex and costly to design satellites that can capture this type of imagery. Second, given that many of Initialized’s team comes from software backgrounds we were just as interested in what Albedo plans to do once they have collected images and gotten them back down to earth. Not only will they innovate on capturing the images, but they will also innovate on how customers interact with and consume those images, creating an API for consumption and prioritizing the developer user experience and performance first.
As venture capitalists, we do a lot of thinking about potential markets for the startups we fund. What is special about Albedo is that if they deliver on their promise we’re almost certain there will be new use cases and markets we are not currently even able to identify. The commercial sector has never seen this type of imagery available before and we can’t wait to watch Albedo get it to market and discover all the ways it can be used.