Being born global Open Cosmos has found it easier to operate in Europe than the rest of the world, because of the buying power of public and private entities and the reduced amount of paperwork. In addition, it has been easier to arrange meetings with closer neighbours. There might be some changes on the horizon as the UK leaves the EU, but Siquier does not anticipate this being damaging. “It’s true that we had to spend time planning for a few scenarios, and that we are taking it seriously. However, the biggest impact so far was the time it cost us explaining to many stakeholders how we are not too affected.
Although there are further growth plans on the horizon, Open Cosmos only researches entry into another country when there is significant interest, as it is already firmly established in the US and Europe. ?Depending on the country, research can take minutes or hours,” said Siquier. ?We are seeing an increase in conversations with entities in Asia and the emerging countries. Their governments make it attractive to startup companies that work with assets in and data from space. Those entities are great potential customers.
Obstacles to exporting There have been other challenges to overcome operating in so many countries, such as language barriers. According to Siquier, sometimes the information flow with other entities would be easier between native speakers, but the business has addressed this issue by hiring staff with German, French, Mandarin, Estonian, Spanish and Catalan language skills. Being born global, the business took care to design the product with export compatibility in mind from minute one. However, logistics at short notice can still be a challenge. ?We had to get one of our satellites to the Netherlands very quickly and the logistics companies refused to accept a job of that value on short notice,” explained Siquier. “It was easier in the end to book a flight and to get the paperwork done to take it onto a plane. To infinity, and beyond Over the next 12 months, the business has ambitious growth plans. Siquier plans to triple the team size and grow the number of potential mission customers by getting more development kits out to people from other industries that will start using space technology as a tool. “The space industry foresees continued growth and investment in the future, as it had been in the past during global economic fluctuations,” he said. ?Part of the reason behind it is the strategic nature of the products and services. This acts as a good anchor for our business. The rest is good management of risk and keeping oversight.
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