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RSA funding supports expansion

Satellite firm Bird.i focuses on new markets

Khalifa International stadium by Bird.i

Khalifa International stadium in Qatar photographed by Bird.i

Satellite and aerial imaging specialist Bird.i, whose technology can be used to monitor progress on key infrastructure sites, has secured funding to support expansion into new industry sectors.

The Glasgow-based company has received £210,000 of Regional Selective Assistance funding from Scottish Enterprise to create 14 jobs and scale up its operations. It will enhance its product offering by providing intelligence on the images it takes.

The company’s satellite images have been used in a wide range of applications. The technology enabled progress to be observed on World Cup football stadiums in Qatar, and indicated that reserves at two major oil refineries in Saudi Arabia may have been higher than reported.

Business Minister Paul Wheelhouse, said: “Bird-i is an impressive example of an innovative small business and I’m delighted that Scottish Enterprise has been able to support the company’s growth.

“Small and medium sized enterprises are the lifeblood of Scotland’s economy, and businesses like Bird-i are helping to develop the digital skills talent we have here, as well as increasing our pool of specialists in new technologies, and we are keen to support their aspirations to expand their business.

“Bird.i’s close ties with the world’s leading satellite operators – Airbus and Digital Globe –bring a real international focus on the digital skills base here in Scotland and our capabilities in data analytics and that is something I very much welcome.”

Founded in 2016 by Corentin Guillo, a French entrepreneur with a background in Earth observation satellite development, Bird.i collates satellite, airborne and drone imagery every day in order to build up a high quality, accurate view of the changing world.

Its technology has a range of applications from the construction and infrastructure to finance and transportation of commodities.

Mr Guillo, CEO and founder, said: “The establishment of Bird.i in Scotland following the completion of a first investment round was a bold decision which has been motivated by the access to local talents and the support from the Scottish Government.

“This RSA funding will help to establish further Bird.i’s presence in the Scottish ecosystem and become an employer of choice.”

Rhona Allison, interim managing director for company growth and innovation at Scottish Enterprise, said: “This expansion represents an exciting step forward in the evolution of Bird.i.

“Scottish Enterprise is delighted to have supported the company at each stage of its development from initial strategy and management planning though the High Growth Ventures team, to equity investment and ongoing account management support.”

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