Pale Blue



Pale Blue raises USD7.5M to set up production facility

CHIBA, Japan – Pale Blue Inc. has secured USD 7.5M (JPY 1 billion) in the first close of the Series B round of funding coupled with recent bank loans. In addition, the company has been selected by NEDO, a national research and development agency in Japan, for its Deep Tech Startups (“DTSU”) support program – DMP phase (Demonstration development for Mass Production). With these funding and the DTSU program, we will set up a new production facility while enhancing propulsion system design for mass production.

main picture with logos

Objective of fund-raising

As the first close of the Series B round, Pale Blue implemented the issuance of new shares through third-party allotment to Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Venture Capital and Incubate Fund. Both parties are existing investors from the Seed round. A second close is scheduled to be completed in the fall of 2023. The total amount raised together with recent bank loans is approximately USD 7.5M (JPY 1 billion). With the Series B round of financing, the company will further accelerate R&D of propulsion systems for small satellites. In addition, following the successful in-orbit operation of its water-based propulsion system in March 2023, the company will scale up the team and set up a production facility.

Read news release (“Pale Blue successfully operates its water-based propulsion system in orbit”):


About DTSU program

Pale Blue has been selected by NEDO for the DMP phase of its FY2023 1st DTSU program and will work on a grant program, “Establishment of Mass Production Technology for Satellite Propulsion System Using Water as Propellant.” The DTSU program promotes investment in deep tech startups to accelerate business growth and social implementation of innovative technologies. Its DMP phase aims for the commercialization of companies with developed products by supporting establishment of mass production technology as well as installation of production and inspection equipment. Through this program, we will advance R&D activities for mass production of water-based propulsion systems for satellites and will install necessary equipment to achieve it.

About the DTSU program (Japanese):

List of awarded companies (Japanese):


Comment from Jun Asakawa, CEO and Co-Founder of Pale Blue

We are very pleased to announce that we have implemented the first close of Series B funding with Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Venture Capital and Incubate Fund, who have continuously supported us through the Seed round and the Series A round, and that we have been selected for NEDO’s DTSU program. With this round of funding, we will conduct R&D to enhance the system design and set up a production base. In addition, through the awarded DTSU program, we will accelerate R&D work to establish mass production technology and will install necessary production equipment. Water-based propulsion systems will contribute to the sustainable development of the space industry. We will continue to develop new technologies and create mobility infrastructures that are core to the space industry.


Comments from Hiroaki Hirai, Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Venture Capital

It is a great honor for us to announce that Pale Blue has been selected for the DMP phase of the NEDO Deep Tech Startup support program. This will help enhance their ability to supply compact propulsion systems that use the ultimate green propellant, water. With the rapid expansion of small satellite mega-constellations, we are confident that their small propulsion system will be the key device for the small satellite market over a course of competition with other propulsion system startups around the world.


Comments from Yusuke Murata, Incubate Fund

I am very honored to lead this round following the Seed round and the Series A round. It is only with the great team that they have managed to make it this far in the past three and a half years after incorporation. Finally, it is time for their full-scale mass production phase, and we will continue this journey together.


About Pale Blue

Pale Blue is a space-tech startup from the University of Tokyo founded in 2020. The company offers next-generation spacecraft propulsion systems that use water as a safe green propellant. Through its innovative propulsion technologies, Pale Blue aims to develop a space ecosystem where in-space mobility is not only affordable but completely safe and sustainable.




E-mail address: