Google's parent company might sell Skybox, the startup it bought almost 3 years ago for $500 million

Skybox imaging labSkybox ImagingA Skybox imaging lab.

Google’s parent company Alphabet is reportedly in talks to sell off Skybox, the startup it acquired for around $500 million almost three years ago.

Bloomberg’s Mark Bergen and Ashlee Vance report that Alphabet is in talks to sell the satellite-imaging company to Planet Labs, another satellite-imaging startup.

Alphabet paid $500 million for Skybox, a company that takes high-definition images for agricultural planning and scientific purposes, among other things.

The sale could be part of a larger trend at Alphabet: scaling back some of the company’s more ambitious projects as part of a larger cost-cutting measure.

In August, Alphabet reportedly cut its Fibre business in half, cutting 9% of the staff at the internet service provider. The company announced in November that it was scaling back its experimental drone delivery program, Project Wing. And in December, Alphabet rebranded and spun out its self-driving car project as Waymo, axing plans to build its own vehicle in favour of partnering with automakers.

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