Google is selling its $500 million satellite company to a startup

Terra bella satellite imageTerra BellaA satellite image taken by Terra Bella.

Terra Bella, the satellite imaging company that Google bought about two years ago for $500 million, will be sold to mapping startup Planet Labs, the companies announced Friday.

According to the agreement, Planet Labs will acquire the Terra Bella business and satellites and Google will continue to licence the satellite imagery for its mapping products.

The companies did not disclose the financial terms of the deal.

However, a source familiar with the terms of the deal told Business Insider that Planet Labs paid less than the $500 million Google originally paid, but the deal was still above $300 million. The source also said Google will be a major shareholder in Planet Labs and continue to be invested in Terra Bella’s success long-term.

The move marks the latest effort by Google’s parent company Alphabet to manage spending throughout the organisation.

In the past year Alphabet has canceled its plans to deliver the internet from solar-powered drones, ended the expansion of its Google Fibre internet service, and slowed down development of its drone-delivery service. The company has also lost several key executives.

Alphabet’s Other Bets lost $1.088 billion last quarter on $262 million in revenue, the company reported in its earnings last month.

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