Slingshot Aerospace is going international.

The space situational awareness (SSA) firm is opening two offices in the UK in its first expansion outside America’s borders. The company’s new digs in Cornwall and London are designed to expand the company’s business opportunities further into the UK and European market.

“Once you get to a certain stage, you need to look at how you diversify your market,” Melissa Quinn, the new general manager for Slingshot’s international expansion, told Payload. “For us, it’s all about where are the opportunities internationally in regards to space situational awareness and space domain awareness. There’s a huge appetite for it out there.”

Slingshot 101: The Austin, TX-based company was founded in 2017 to create a one-stop shop for customers to understand what’s going on in the orbital environment. Slingshot operates a global sensor network and offers SSA software to help customers track satellites and debris while managing their on-orbit assets.

To the UK…Slingshot already had a bit of a foothold across the pond, having acquired Seradata, a UK firm that maintains a database of every satellite launch since 1957, in August 2022. This arm has been operating out of an office in London, which will serve as the springboard for Slingshot’s London footprint.

Quinn’s experience as the former head of Spaceport Cornwall helped influence the decision to stand up a second office amid that cluster of aerospace firms.

“They’ve got brand new facilities that will grow as we grow, so that we can start in a certain smaller office…and if we need ITAR space, then we can get that there as well,” Quinn said. “It gives us that future growth opportunity.”

Slingshot is aiming to hire ~20 people across the two offices over the next six months, and could grow more next year if the international expansion takes off.

…and beyond: The new offices won’t just support the expansion of UK business (though that’s first on the docket). The proximity to and relationship with the broader European market is also a priority for Slingshot, which aims to become the global leader in SSA services.

“I think it kind of opens up the doors to other markets over here in Europe and further afield,” Quinn said.

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