Economy & Economic Development  December 14, 2023

In-space propulsion company eyes region for HQ

DENVER — The Colorado Economic Development Commission on Thursday unanimously approved an offer of tax incentives to a foreign aerospace company that could establish its new headquarters in the Centennial State.

The company, referred to by Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade staff as Project Ladybug, specializes in “in-space propulsion solutions for satellites and other spacecraft designed to simplify the user experience when integrating a spacecraft before launch,” according to OEDIT.

It is the commission’s practice not to identify companies OEDIT is recruiting until incentives are accepted.

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“The company behind Project Ladybug is scouting for a permanent location in the U.S. to assemble and deliver products to the customer and continue the development of the product pipeline for the years ahead,” an OEDIT document said. “Once development is completed, the company behind Project Ladybug will scale up operations to deliver thousands of products per year.”

Within Colorado, Project Ladybug is considering the Denver metropolitan area, which includes Boulder and Broomfield counties. The firm is also considering Los Angeles, Texas and Austria for its headquarters. 

“The company is interested in access to talent, a favorable tax environment, and proximity to leading companies in the space industry,” an OEDIT memo said. 

Project Ladybug has 11 employees, none of whom are in Colorado. 

The EDC approved a tad more than $1.3 million in incentives for the company over an eight-year period. Should Project Ladybug accept, it would pledge to create 160 new jobs at an annual average wage of $109,638.

To secure the incentives, Project Ladybug must also provide the state with proof by the end of 2024 that it has raised $1.875 million in capital. The company anticipates that it will soon raise $2.5 million in a seed fundraising round, according to OEDIT. 

“This project would support the state’s economic goals by reinforcing Colorado’s aerospace industry sector supply chain with up and coming technology and creating high paying net new jobs in advanced manufacturing,” according to OEDIT. “This project would also qualify as foreign direct investment that includes a U.S. headquarters operation.”

An unidentified company representative was present for Thursday’s EDC meeting but did not comment on the project. The commission did not ask any questions of the representative.

DENVER — The Colorado Economic Development Commission on Thursday unanimously approved an offer of tax incentives to a foreign aerospace company that could establish its new headquarters in the Centennial State.

The company, referred to by Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade staff as Project Ladybug, specializes in “in-space propulsion solutions for satellites and other spacecraft designed to simplify the user experience when integrating a spacecraft before launch,” according to OEDIT.

It is the commission’s practice not to identify companies OEDIT is recruiting until incentives are accepted.

“The company behind Project Ladybug is scouting for a permanent location in the U.S.…

Lucas High
A Maryland native, Lucas has worked at news agencies from Wyoming to South Carolina before putting roots down in Colorado.
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