Alphabet Inc’s Google said on Friday it would sell its satellite imaging business, Terra Bella, to Planet Labs, a San Francisco-based private satellite operator founded by former NASA scientists.
The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
As part of the deal, Planet Labs will acquire the Terra Bella business including the SkySat constellation of satellites, Alphabet said.
“When we thought about a company that shares Terra Bella’s passion and strengths in high frequency satellite imaging, Planet was a natural home,” said Jen Fitzpatrick, VP of Product and Engineering, Google. “Terra Bella has accomplished a lot in the past two years-including the design and launch of five more satellites. We’re excited to see what’s ahead for Terra Bella, and look forward to being a long-term customer.”
Google will enter into a multi-year contract to purchase Earth-imaging data from Planet Labs after the deal closes.
Google had acquired Terra Bella, originally known as Skybox Imaging, for $500 million in 2014.
The deal will help Planet Labs broaden its available data and add new customers.
Planet Labs is one of several startups aiming to harness technology allowing satellites to become smaller and less expensive, making it easier to deploy large networks of satellites at less risk and lower cost than previously.
© Thomson Reuters 2017