The Legault government has reinvested an unspecified sum in NorthStar Ciel et Terre, a company whose main shareholder is Charles Sirois, co-founder of the Coalition Avenir Qu├ębec (CAQ).

Mathieu St-Amand, spokesperson for the Minister of the Economy, could not say yesterday how much this new investment from Quebec amounted to.

NorthStar Funding

The government assistance is part of a $48 million financing that was announced yesterday by NorthStar.

The round was led by New York-based firm Cartesian Capital. Other NorthStar shareholders also participated: the Sirois family, the Rogers family of Toronto and the government of Luxembourg.

Already $38M from governments

So far, taxpayers have invested at least $38 million in NorthStar: $26 million in 2018 (a sum split equally between Quebec and Ottawa) and $12 million in 2021 (Quebec).

NorthStar bills itself as the first commercial company to monitor all near-Earth orbits. She aims to make Montreal the “control tower of space” with data that will allow satellite operators to better manage their fleets and avoid collisions.

If all goes as planned, NorthStar’s first three UK-built satellites will be launched this year by Virgin Orbit, founded by British entrepreneur Richard Branson.

Last month, NorthStar and competitors won contracts from the US Commerce Department for a pilot space traffic coordination project.

NorthStar employs approximately 50 people at its offices in Montreal, Luxembourg and Virginia.