Rising Stars: SARsat Arabia

Rising Stars: SARsat Arabia

As business ventures that develop cutting-edge offerings on the basis of engineering innovation or scientific discoveries and advances, startups in the deep tech space are companies known to be working on the next major tech breakthrough- and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia can proudly claim to be home to several of them now.

Following a review of their offerings, their potential, the funds they have raised, and many other such factors, we picked the top five emerging deep tech startups in the Kingdom today, and here's one of them: SARsat Arabia, a Saudi Arabia-based space tech startup that provides earth observation data and analytics using synthetic aperture radar.

A spin-off of the Taqadam Startup Accelerator program, incubated and funded by the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), SARsat Arabia is a space tech startup that provides earth observation data and analytics using synthetic aperture radar. “Using unique technology, SARsat Arabia can provide satellite imagery even in challenging conditions like cloud cover or during nighttime, and this means stakeholders can access reliable satellite imagery insights anytime, anywhere in the world,” explains Ahmed Alzubairi, co-founder at SARsat Arabia. “SARsat Arabia’s ultimate vision is to launch 16 satellites of optical and payloads, bringing near real-time satellite imagery and analytics for the environment, oil and gas, financial security, and defense sectors. Our mission is to provide reliable images from space to empower better decisions on Earth.”

Image by LEAP Forward.

Since its inception, this space startup has been able to gain the support of the Saudi Space Agency, UAE Space Agency, the MiSK Accelerator, but Alzubairi admits that the company did not have it easy getting off the ground. That said, Alzubairi notes that being based in Saudi Arabia helped his enterprise a great deal, and that underlines SARsat Arabia’s dedication to the nation. “We see ourselves being in Saudi Arabia long-term,” he says. “The Kingdom’s commitment to innovation and technology, combined with its strategic location and access to resources, makes it an ideal location for a deep-tech enterprise like SARsat Arabia. As a deep tech enterprise, we are committed to developing indigenous technologies to participate in Saudi economic diversification and sustainable development goals.”

In terms of advice for founders of other deep tech startups in Saudi Arabia, Alzubairi says that entrepreneurs in this domain need to focus on real word problems, be patient and persistent, and aim to build strong partnerships as they move ahead in their respective business journeys. “Also, take advantage of the resources available, because Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 initiative has created a favorable environment for deep tech startups, providing access to funding, talent, and resources,” Alzubairi adds. “And lastly, since Saudi Arabia has a large and growing talent pool of skilled professionals, do seek out local talent, and invest in their development to build a strong team.”

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