Japan gives moonshot startup ispace a subsidy of up to $80 million
Industry Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura announced on Friday that Japan will fund lunar exploration firm ispace (9348.T) with up to 12 billion yen ($80 million) as part of a grant program for creative projects.
Tokyo-based ispace, which made an unsuccessful attempt at a lunar landing in April of this year, plans to launch a second moon lander next year and begin a NASA-sponsored moonshot in 2026.
According to ispace’s corporate report, the grant from the Japanese government will be used to create a new spaceship, which is being referred to as “Series 3” and is intended to carry more than 100 kg of cargo to the moon’s surface by 2027.
Since the grant is related to a future mission, ispace noted, it will not materially affect the company’s near-term profitability forecast. The current financial period, which ends in March 2024, is anticipated to result in a net loss of 4.5 billion yen for the corporation.