India's growing space industry at dawn of new era, says Deloitte

27 October 2023 4 min. read
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India's space sector is at the start of a new era and will help the country grow its share of the global space economy from up to 3% to a sizable 9% by 2030. To realise the industry's full potential, infrastructure funding from the Indian government is required, according to report from Deloitte.

The Indian Space Research Organisation has carved out a path for a new generation of space exploration. India-headquartered private entities have given new life to the space game on a global scale, with the sector witnessing a renaissance of innovation and commersialisation.

In this regard, the Government of India has undertaken a series of reforms aimed at reinvigorating its domestic space industry by fostering an environment for private players to take part in the space race.

India's growing space industry at dawn of new era, says Deloitte

The growth agenda will be driven by cost reduction efforts, accelerated turnaround times, and technological advancements realised by private enterprises within the space industry.

India’s ambitions in the landscape comes at a time when the global space economy – valued at approximately $550 billion just last year – has been projected to reach $1 trillion by 2040.

The rise of what Deloitte dubs the ‘NewSpace movement’ – the entrance of private players like Indian Space Promotion and Authorization Centre (IN-SPACe) and NewSpace India (NSIL) – into the Indian space economy signifies a paradigm change. This will see the private sector play a more important role in advancing R&D and technology, with the resulting advancements in intellectual property and proprietary technology expected to continue to propel the industry as a whole.

India's growing space industry at dawn of new era, says Deloitte

Start-ups in the space sector

As a result of the government's strategic efforts and the public's increased interest in entrepreneurship and innovation, the number of new participants in the sector is rising. With over 420 registered space start-ups, Deloitte claims that the Indian space sector has had unparalleled growth not seen in decades.

“The expanding landscape has generated a remarkable surge in the number of space startups,” said Deloitte in its report. This movement is complemented by corporate venturing activity from corporates and private equity investments, with private investments into private players growing to over $119 million in funding last year alone.

India's growing space industry at dawn of new era, says Deloitte

A number of companies have received large amounts of funding from various entities in the past few years, contributing to the notable expansion and investment in the private space industry. In the period 2021 and 2022, there was more than 75% increase in private investments in the sector.

Government reigns

Although there has been a lot of interest from the private sector in India, national security and strategic space programs primarily driven by government agency are still the main drivers of space exploration and innovation for countries that have entered space.

India's growing space industry at dawn of new era, says Deloitte

The India space sector, as attractive as it may seem now, still needs to further encourage capital inflow and allow businesses to secure more government contracts to draw in more investors in order to foster a robust and thriving space ecosystem in India.

According to research from Strategy&, the United States and the United Kingdom are the world’s two most attractive space markets for investors.