Press release

XPRIZE Awards $1 Million ‘Moonshot Award’ to Team SpaceIL

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the global leader in designing and operating world-changing incentive
competitions, announced it will recognize SpaceIL’s achievement with a
$1 million Moonshot Award for its successful entry into lunar orbit and
for its attempt to land on the lunar surface – both of which are
“firsts” for a privately-funded entity, marking a new era in space

SpaceIL’s robotic lander, Beresheet, Hebrew for “Genesis,” came very
close to touching down on the Moon yesterday, but ultimately failed to
soft-land during its final descent. As it prepared for landing,
Beresheet experienced a main engine failure and lost communication with
mission control in Tel Aviv, suggesting the lander crashed into the

“SpaceIL’s mission not only touched the Moon, it touched the lives and
hearts of an entire world that was watching,” said Peter H. Diamandis,
executive chairman and founder of XPRIZE. “The legacy SpaceIL will have
on the future of the space industry is significant. This team’s ability
to build a lunar lander for $100 million and less than 50 engineers is
remarkable, a leap forward towards affordable and accessible space
exploration. Congratulations to Morris Kahn, their primary benefactor,
and the entire SpaceIL team for all their accomplishments — we are so

SpaceIL was founded in 2011 by Yariv Bash, Kfir Damari and Yonatan
Winetraub, in order to compete in the $30 million Google Lunar XPRIZE.
In 2015, SpaceIL became the first team to announce a launch contract,
and they launched for the Moon on a SpaceX Falcon 9 on February 21, 2019.

“As a testament to the team’s passion and persistence, we are presenting
this $1 Million Moonshot Award to the SpaceIL team at our annual
Visioneering Summit in October 2019, with the hope that they will use
these funds as seed money towards their education outreach or Beresheet
2.0, a second attempt to fulfill the mission,” said Anousheh Ansari,
chief executive officer of XPRIZE. “We are so proud and humbled to have
served as the catalyst for this mission, not just to further private
space exploration, but to increase access to education, career
opportunities, and role models in this field, something that is very
much in line with the values of the XPRIZE Foundation.”

The Moonshot Award, inspired by SpaceIL, was created to recognize an
XPRIZE team achieving a “moonshot” technological feat outside the
parameters or timeframe of an XPRIZE competition, with the funds coming
directly from the XPRIZE Foundation. Future Moonshot Awards will be
considered in other domains, recognizing both literal and figurative


XPRIZE designs and operates global competitions to incentivize the
development of technological breakthroughs that accelerate humanity
toward a better future. Active competitions include the $20M NRG COSIA
Carbon XPRIZE, the $15M Global Learning XPRIZE, the $10M ANA Avatar
XPRIZE, the $7M Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE, and the $5M IBM Watson AI
XPRIZE. For more information, visit