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  • Satellite Evolution

Inward Investment: Why business is choosing Cornwall for expansion efforts

Cornwall’s space and data sector is thriving and continues to grow, with the GVA of our space and data businesses worth £88m and employment within the sector up 24% since 2018.

To date, over 500 companies have chosen Cornwall as a base for their UK and international operations. Data experts, Intelligent AI ; satellite development specialists, Exobotics; and specialist programme and systems engineering company, KISPE, have all invested in Cornwall as part of expansion plans, with the help of Cornwall Space Cluster.

But why Cornwall? What does the county have to offer businesses like Intelligent AI, Exobotics and KISPE? Why have we seen such high growth and investment in Cornwall’s space, data and aerospace industry?

Intelligent AI is a data business, using artificial intelligence, satellite data and other data sets to help insurance companies produce risk assessments for land and properties. Combining current and historic data they create a complete overall perspective designed to help insurers make informed decisions and provide actionable insights faster. Intelligent AI believes that intelligent insight is the key to better business decision making, which in turn creates a better world.

With drone flight testing sites and a growing Space enabled ecosystem, a dedicated horizontal launch site at Spaceport Cornwall and a satellite ground station at Goonhilly Earth Station, Cornwall is well-equipped to support Intelligent AI in reaching their goals. And let’s not forget the world-leading facilities designed to provide safe, dedicated and responsible access to space at the Centre for Space Technologies in Newquay (CST).

Intelligent AI is one of the many innovative companies set to move into the CST, with plans to make an additional four hires within Cornwall following recent recruitment in the region.

The Centre for Space Technologies will be home to academic partners, SMEs, multinationals and environmental organisations who will come together and collaborate on responsible launch practices and applications - showcasing how space can help solve some of our greatest challenges on earth. The facilities are key to Cornwall’s space cluster development and continued growth for cutting-edge practice within the region, and will serve as a catalyst to attract space businesses to work alongside academia in this unique capacity.

With ambitions to make space accessible and economical for every business, start-up company, Exobotics, uses the latest advancements in robotics, materials, structures and artificial intelligence to reduce the barriers to entry required to access space in terms of skill and time. Developing software and hardware that is scalable, modular, and tuned for the challenges of operation in extreme environments.

In addition to offices in London and Cambridge, Exobotics moved into Cornwall to support plans to help the UK capture 10% of the global space economy by 2030. Making the most of the county’s capability to handle end-to-end space missions, availability of training and highly skilled hires from academia and industry, its strong, relevant local supply chain and Incredible support, including funding from Cornwall Space Cluster.

With over 25 years of experience delivering complex, technically challenging business and engineering programmes, space, telecommunications and electronic specialists, KISPE, are no stranger to Cornwall, having been supporting the development of Spaceport Cornwall and the operations leading to the upcoming first horizontal orbital launch from UK soil. KISPE is also involved in the development and delivery of the Kernow-Sat project.

The benefits of working in Cornwall and the opportunities for businesses in the space and data sector are not lost on the team at KISPE, which is why the company plans on opening an engineering arm in the county.

It's clear that with all the innovation happening in Cornwall that more companies will soon follow the path of companies like KISPE, Exobotics and Intelligent AI, setting up operations to benefit from the valuable resources, skills and knowledge in the region.

For any businesses looking to make the move into Cornwall, Cornwall Space Cluster is on hand to support research, development and innovation. Funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Cornwall Council and delivered by Cornwall Development Company (CDC), Cornwall Space Cluster offer technical and commercial support for businesses across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly who are developing new products, services and technologies that add value to the space and aerospace sectors.

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