SAN FRANCISCO, April 18, 2022– (BUSINESS WIRE) – Planet Labs PBC (NYSE: PL), a leading provider of daily data and insights about Earth, has partnered with SynMax, a Houston-based satellite analytics and intelligence firm, to provide data-informed insight into the energy industry in the United States and monitor the movements of dark vessels around the globe.
With the Planet’s daily PlanetScope images, SynMax monitors the location of hundreds of well pads for hydraulic fracturing and the ongoing activity at the sites of frac crews that maintain well operation and safety. These frac crews are responsible for the final steps in the development of oil and gas wells, and with Planet data, the status of the sites can be monitored in almost real time. By gathering intelligence on these operations, SynMax is able to inform energy-focused hedge funds, seeking to accurately predict the supply of oil and gas in the short term.
After meeting Planet’s CEO and co-founder Will Marshall at his TED talk in 2014, Bill Perkins, founder of SynMax and owner of energy hedge fund Skylar Capital, came up with the idea of monitoring frac crew activity on a daily basis with Planet’s images. The planet’s approximately 200 satellites provide a line scanner of the Earth that images all terrestrial locations every day. This unprecedented amount of data gives Planet’s customers situational awareness and real-time insight into daily changes on Earth.
“The problem of accurate short-term oil and gas supply forecasts has been a persistent problem for energy hedge funds, and I was immediately interested in how the Planet’s satellite data could be used to reliably monitor frac crew activity,” says Perkins. “The supply is so crucial to the price that once this [frac crew] data becomes available to the market, we believe hedge funds will not be able to trade without them. “
Perkins commissioned then-quantitative analyst Eric Anderson, now SynMax CTO, to develop a model that incorporated the Planet’s daily PlanetScope data into an analysis of frac crew activity. “We [Skylar Capital] “has thoroughly explored the offerings of frac crew monitoring services from other companies and has been consistently frustrated by the poor quality of their data, which relies on inconsistent and rare free low-resolution satellite imagery,” Anderson recalled. Anderson and his team found that planet data allowed them to track operational frac crews in near real time.
Using their proprietary artificial intelligence combined with Planet satellite data, SynMax will deliver maritime solutions for IUU fishing, illegal ship-to-ship transfers and vessel spoofing. SynMax is now developing a first of its kind dark vessel tracking product titled Project Theia. Aimed at the commercial market, this project will enable vessel operators, maritime insurers and hedge funds interested in secret commodity flows to detect, monitor and investigate dark vessels operating across the globe.
“SynMax has found that it can detect in-mass maritime vessels around the world that do not transpose their location using partly the planet’s daily images,” said SynMax CEO Brendan Moore, a former British intelligence officer.
Together, these two companies could deliver unmatched data-informed intelligence to hedge funds invested in the energy industry and companies that rely on transparent maritime commodity flows. The planet’s daily coverage of the globe could enable the financial industry to make better data-informed decisions, in part through innovative companies like SynMax.
About the Planet
Planet is a leading provider of global, daily satellite imagery and geospatial solutions. The planet is driven by a mission to portray the world every day and make change visible, accessible and action-oriented. The planet, which was founded in 2010 by three NASA scientists, designs, builds and operates the largest Earth observation fleet of imaging satellites that capture over 30 TB of data a day. The planet delivers mission-critical data, advanced insights and software solutions to over 700 customers, including the world’s leading agricultural, forestry, intelligence, education and finance companies and government agencies, enabling users to easily and efficiently get unique value from satellite imagery . Planet is a Public Benefit Corporation listed on the New York Stock Exchange as PL. To learn more visit www.planet.com and follow us on Twitter.
SynMax is a data intelligence company. SynMax creates products that transform satellite imagery into usable intelligence for investors, market participants and governments.
Apart from the historical information contained herein, the matters set forth in this press release are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the “safe harbor” provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including, but not limited to, the Company’s ability to capture market opportunities and realize any of the potential benefits of strategic partnerships and customer partnerships. Forward-looking statements are based on the Company’s management beliefs, as well as assumptions made by, and information currently available to them. Because such statements are based on expectations of future events and results and are not statements of facts, the actual results may differ materially from those expected. Factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations include, but are not limited to, risk factors and other information about the Company and its business included in the Company’s periodic reports, proxies and other disclosures provided from time to time. at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which is available online at www.sec.gov and on the company’s website at www.planet.com. All forward-looking statements reflect only the Company’s beliefs and assumptions from the date of such statements. The Company assumes no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect future events or circumstances.
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Planet Labs PBC
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Chris Genualdi, Cleo Palmer-Poroner
Planet Labs PBC