Japanese startup Space One aims to carry out its inaugural rocket launch in February 2023, upon unveiling the nation’s first private sector launchpad.

Japan continues its efforts to develop as a new space hub for the world, powering innovation in Artificial Intelligence (AI), advanced communication, and robotics capabilities. Its technological edge has placed the country at the forefront of the industry, advancing its involvement and efforts in global space exploration, from leading government-backed research to independent multinational projects.

Space One is one of the nation’s many such pioneers, with an aim to provide smart and convenient space transport. The SpaceTech startup has announced its plans to conduct its maiden rocket launch in early 2023. This statement followed the official inauguration of Space One’s private sector launch pad, Space Port Kii, located in Kushimoto.

Its 15 hectare site is the nation’s first-ever civilian rocket launch platform, and houses a few different towers for the assembly, inspection, and control of spacecrafts.

The global satellite market has shown tremendous progress and is deemed a fast-growing industry. Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) has stated that over 1,809 satellites were launched worldwide in 2021.

Smaller satellites are further pushing this market expansion, foreseeing an increase in valuation worth US$7.4 billion by 2026.

Space One is yet to confirm the satellite it intends to launch in February, maintaining the confidentiality of its agreement. However, the startup has confirmed that it will further monitor and administer the launch and its progress throughout the operation from the control room at its Wakayama prefecture site.

Japanese Startup Space One


Space One’s initial launch was pushed back twice in 2022 as it faced supply chain issues. Moving forward, it anticipates conducting around 20 launches annually by mid-decade, given the opportunity.

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