Made In Space (MIS), the company that brought 3D printing to the International Space Station, has been acquired by Redwire, a specialist in mission critical space solutions and a producer of space components. The terms of the acquisition were not disclosed, but the acquisition comprised of Made In Space and Made In Space Europe, the original company’s sister company based in Luxembourg.
You might be wondering why you haven’t heard of Redwire. It’s probably because the company is brand new. Redwire was launched in June 2020 by AE Industrial Partners (AEI), a private equity firm specializing in aerospace, defense and government services and specialty industrial markets. Interestingly, earlier this year AEI acquired Adcole Space, a specialist in the design, manufacture, integration, test and operation of small satellites and spacecraft components; and Deep Space Systems, a Colorado-based space systems engineering company. Both of these companies’ portfolios are now part of Redwire’s technology portfolio, which includes space sensors, payloads, flight hardware and exploration spacecraft. With the recent acquisition of Made In Space, Redwire is expanding its portfolio significantly.
“To truly realize the full potential for space exploration, innovation must change the economics,” commented Peter Cannito, CEO of Redwire. “Made In Space has been driving these innovations and is now positioned to revolutionize the industry.”
Made In Space, as many in the AM industry will already know, was the first company to 3D print parts in space. Founded in 2010, the American firm has carved out a solid position for itself in the space industry by pioneering in-orbit manufacturing and assembly solutions. The prolific company has worked with NASA on many projects aimed at advancing in-space manufacturing, including the Archinaut program – a robotic manufacturing and assembly system capable of building large-scale structures in space. Made In Space has also grown considerably, with offices in Jacksonville, Florida, California, Alabama and Ohio.
“Joining Redwire is an exciting opportunity to be part of a new company taking an innovative approach to address the needs of today’s space industry,” said Andrew Rush, President and CEO of MIS. “Redwire provides us with the scale and space heritage we need to take our technology to the next level.”
Michael Snyder, MIS Chief Engineer, added: “We share Redwire’s vision to push the boundaries of technological innovation in space to enable greater opportunities for positive economic impact on Earth and advance exploration. With strong support from Redwire and AEI, we look forward to accelerating our efforts and delivering new capabilities to the market.”
So, just like that, a new space company has broken onto the scene. Through its various acquisitions, Redwire has an interesting technology portfolio that could enable it to rise to a prominent position. “Combining the game-changing innovations of Made In Space with the unmatched flight heritage of Adcole Space and Deep Space Systems creates a truly unique space platform,” explained Kirk Konert, Partner at AEI. “Additionally, gaining a European presence through Made In Space Europe will allow us to better serve the global space community. We look forward to working with Andrew, Mike and the MIS team.”
Though the details of the acquisition were not disclosed, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP was the financial advisor of the deal, while Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as the legal advisor to Redwire, and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP was MIS’ legal advisor.