Upcoming space tech companies in India

Startups may take advantage of a sizable market and are not just reliant on the Indian Space Research Organisation. The use of tiny and microsatellites in a constellation strategy is replacing the use of big satellites globally. An estimated 60,000 of these satellites will be deployed during the next five years. From satellite design through launch, Indian space industries are vying for a piece of this industry. The space technology industry in India is expanding to unprecedented heights. Tracxn statistics show that investment for this industry increased by 198.67% in 2021, reaching $67.2 million across 11 rounds, up from $22.5 million across nine rounds in 2020. According to the Economic Survey 2022, after the Indian federal government started taking moves to privatise the space industry, there were 47 startups in the industry in 2021 as opposed to 11 in 2019. Between August 2021 and February 2022, the number of drone or UAV startups in India increased by 34.4%.

From INR 60 Cr in FY21 to above INR 900 Cr in FY24, the drone manufacturing industry’s yearly sales turnover may increase. With a favourable system for growth of the drone and space tech market in India, here are some companies that are aiming at leaving their mark in this industry.

Aarav Unmanned Systems

Aarav Unmanned Systems, which was founded in 2013, provides complete drone solutions. Headquartered in Bengaluru, AUS founders Vipul Singh and  Suhas Banshiwala aim to manufacture drones of a commercial calibre and offer comprehensive drone-based business solutions for the mining, infrastructure, urban planning, irrigation, energy, and agricultural industries. AUS has received a to-date funding of $748K with investors like GrowX, 500 Startups, StartupXseed, 3one4 capital and Valpro. AUS provides a drone, an operator, and a cloud platform for data processing as part of end-to-end integrated solutions for drone applications. It was also one of the three businesses that the government picked to map India’s 600,000 villages. Up to this point, the drone startup has surveyed more than 5 million acres, 15 thousand villages, and 35 cities. More than 350 stockyards and 250 mines have also been covered by the startup for mining, metal, and electricity firms.

Aarav Unmanned Systems (AUS) and Grip have signed a groundbreaking, exclusive lease agreement worth INR 3.75 Cr. By utilising lease finance for more than 50 drones, Grip will make it possible for AUS to develop new revenue streams as part of the agreement.

Dhruva Space

Dhruva Space, a company specialising in full-stack space engineering solutions, was founded in 2012 by Sanjay Nekkanti, a graduate of SRM University, and later joined by Abhay Egoor, Krishna Teja, and Chaitanya Dora, all BITS-Pilani grads. The spacetech startup has offices in Graz, Austria, and Hyderabad, India. The platform provides modular, application-neutral satellite platforms to make access to space more rapid, dependable, and affordable. In addition to offering launch and ground station services, Dhruva Space also offers clients a seamless one-stop solution for purchasing and managing space-based assets. The business serves both civil and defence clients globally and is involved in the space, launch, and ground segments. In order to promote industry-academia partnerships, Dhruva Space has previously worked with BITS – Hyderabad and IIT Hyderabad. It is being incubated in the Business Incubation Center of the European Space Agency in Austria, giving them access to the technology and market in Europe. It raised Rs 22 crore in October 2021 with help from IAN Fund and Blue Ashva Capital.


NewSpace Research and Technologies is a Bengaluru based company founded in 2018 by Sameer Joshi that creates and develops persistent drones for communications and earth observation. NRT platforms have a range of operating distances from 5 km to 20 km (a few days to months). It will concentrate on drone logistics operations for civil purposes in addition to the defence industry. The Indian Army and Noida-based Raphe secured two contracts in September for Swarm drones totaling more than Rs 200 crore. The firm has an estimated worth of about Rs 717 crore ($87 million), according to estimates (post-money). About $33 million has been raised for NewSpace to date, including a $21 million Series A round in February of this year.

Garuda Aerospace 

Garuda Aerospace was founded in 2015 by Agnishwar Jayaprakash and is headquartered in Chennai. Drones are created, assembled, and customised by Garuda Aerospace for a variety of uses, including event photography, agricultural surveying, reconnaissance, and surveillance. The company offers a variety of products, including Fixed-wing VTOL, Agri Drone, Mapping Drone, Surveillance (drone), Solar Panel Cleaning Drone, Seed Dropping Drone, and Loudspeaker Drone.

The foodtech unicorn Swiggy has teamed up with four drone businesses, including Garuda, for drone grocery delivery experiments in Bengaluru and Delhi NCR. Additionally, it has orders for over 8,000 drones from other nations, including Malaysia, Panama, and the United Arab Emirates. It conducted sanitization activities in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s election district in 2020. In Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, and Chattisgarh, its drones and pilots were also used to sanitise hospitals, public places, and communities. Earlier Mahendra Singh Dhoni, an Indian cricketer, made a June investment in Garuda Aerospace. The drone business previously received funding from Ocgrow Ventures and a few angel investors in the banking industry. 


The hyperspectral imaging satellites are being built and launched by the Los Angeles and Bengaluru-based spacetech business Pixxel, which was founded in 2019 by 20-year-olds Awais Ahmed and Kshitij Khandelwal. It asserts to have collaborated with notable organisations, including SpaceX, NASA JPL, and the ISRO, among others. 

“Pixxel is a space data company, building a constellation of hyperspectral earth imaging satellites and the analytical tools to mine insights from that data. The constellation is designed to provide global coverage every 24 hours, with the aim of detecting, monitoring and predicting global phenomena”

By providing cutting-edge tools for agricultural, oil and gas, mining, and environmental agencies to analyse geospatial composites of the earth’s surface in real-time through a straightforward API, Pixxel claims their platform enables a range of unique environmental and sustainability use cases (application programming interface). A camera that was introduced last year with partners NanoAvionics and Dragonfly Aerospace also saw the startup successfully recover its first hyper spectral satellite photographs. It used a SpaceX Falcon-9 rocket to launch its first full-fledged commercial satellite, Shakuntala (Technology Demonstrator-2), in April 2022. Shakuntala is one step closer to developing a round-the-clock monitoring system for the globe since it is home to one of the highest resolution hyperspectral commercial cameras ever sent into orbit.

Skylark Drones

Skylark drones is another bengaluru based company founded in 2015 by Mrinal Pai, Mughilan Thiru Ramasamy. End-to-end drone-based solutions from Skylark Drones give insights to support corporate growth. It believes that businesses as diverse as infrastructure, mining, agriculture, utilities, and oil & gas may greatly benefit from the reach, efficiency, and productivity that drones offer. Its drones give business analytics to organisations. Skylark’s product, Spectra and Drone Mission Ops, attempts to offer geospatial analytics to businesses. Worksite intelligence, platform integrations, and API access are all made possible by Spectra. Drone Mission Ops offers fleet and project management for large businesses and individual operators to plan and carry out drone missions. The company has raised $3 million to date from investors like InfoEdge Ventures, IAN Fund, AdvantEdge Founders, Fowler Westrup, Redstart Labs, IKP and Vimson Group. 

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