Space Applications Catapult Launches UK As A Global Centre For Space Finance Report13th Nov 2023
On 7th November, Satellite Applications Catapult has released a paper on the UK as a global centre for space finance. Recognising that the space sector has been reinvigorated thanks to rapidly falling launch costs, Satellite Applications Catapult looks at the UK through the lens of defining its role in this new space era. The company outlines its objective to make the UK and London a worldwide centre for space finance as a cornerstone of the country’s space sector ambitions.
What would be needed to make the UK a global centre for space finance?
This is the question that a number of space and finance experts aim to answer in this paper. Working groups were formed to cover three key domains:
- Pension Funds & Capital Markets
- International Engagement
Together, they considered what would be needed for the UK and London to become a global financial centre for space, outlining what government support may be required to realise this vision.
Pension Funds & Capital Markets
Education is critical here, with a number of other suggested industry actions put forward. This ranges from creating a classification system for space investments to encouraging private equity and venture to add space investments into current multi-sector funds, rather than developing specific funds for space.
With over 25% of global space insurance capacity located in London, the capital is already a worldwide leader in space insurance underwriting. However, regulatory clarity is needed to solidify this. There are also a number of challenges that need to be overcome, including complications in insuring overseas operations and the challenge of insuring new technology.
Finally, international recognition is a must to position the UK and London as a global centre for space finance. Two core elements have been defined to drive international engagement: segmenting our target audience and creating suitable messaging, signalling, and branding.
Visible government commitment is a must
Satellite Applications Catapult also states that the government must openly and explicitly state their ambition for London and the UK to become the de facto global centre for space finance. They recommend creating a National Space Institute and reframing the National Space Strategy.