Tech firm Earth Blox scaling global ambitions with £1.5m from Archangels

Edinburgh-based tech firm Earth Blox, whose clients include the UN, has secured funding of £1.5 million from business angel syndicate Archangels for global expansion of its no-code earth-observation software.

Earth Blox says it enables users to easily create customised insights from satellite and geospatial data, allowing companies from across the energy, insurance, and environmental sectors, as well as various international non-government organisations, to inform critical decision-making around climate and security risks, environmental degradation, and adaptation to climate change.

It adds that ordinarily, harnessing satellite imaging data requires technical coding capabilities, but the Scottish firm’s platform offers access to Google Earth Engine’s petabytes of planetary scale data “with an easy-to-use ‘drag and drop’ interface”.

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The company also says its no-code technology is designed to meet growing demand to quickly and easily access earth observation insights as part of strategic planning, monitoring and reporting.

It explains that it will use the £1.5m funding boost to expand its global reach and further develop its no-code Earth Observation (EO) cloud-based Software as a service (SaaS) – saying the EO market for its kind of value-added services is forecast to more than double to £3.97 billion by 2031 from £1.86bn in 2021, with factors such as environmental, social, and governance (ESG) key drivers.

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The seven-figure sum was raised by Archangels, which says it is the world’s longest-running business angel investment syndicate, and specialises in supporting emerging and ambitious smaller Scottish firms in life sciences and technology.

"This seed round will allow Earth Blox to scale its product, to increase the volume of data sources, and to expand into new markets including agriculture, urban development, finance for asset-management, and ESG,” said Earth Blox.

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From left: Genevieve Patenaude, CEO of Earth Blox; Niki McKenzie, joint MD of Archangels; and Sam Fleming, co-founder of Earth Blox. Picture: contributed.

The firm describes itself as one of the leading companies in Scotland’s burgeoning space, data and environmental tech sectors, with a global client base also including Shell Nature Based Solutions, Globe Underwriting, and ADM Capital Foundation.

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Earth Blox chief executive Genevieve Patenaude said: “We are very pleased to secure this funding from Archangels and join a strong portfolio of businesses in the life sciences and tech sectors.

Vital

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"Investment into innovative businesses like ours is vital to growth in all areas, from customer acquisition to building a great team. This investment will help us develop Earth Blox as a scalable SaaS and get the power of Earth observation insights into the hands of a range of users around the world.”

Niki McKenzie, joint managing director at Archangels, said: “Earth Blox is pioneering the way companies and organisations can access and use satellite data to make better business decisions about the world and how it’s changing.

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“Based in Scotland but with global ambitions, Earth Blox aligns perfectly with our aim of supporting Scotland’s best early-stage businesses with high growth potential. We look forward to supporting Genevieve and her team on this next step of the journey to further develop the product and open up new markets.”

Archangels says it currently has around 120 members and 21 companies in its portfolio, and in 2021 it invested £11.8m to reach a total of £23.6m including co-investment from various partners.

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It recently led an oversubscribed £2.1m additional seed funding round in University of Edinburgh spin-out BioCaptiva that is focused on liquid biopsy testing in cancer-management.

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