Says, Hervé Buchwalter, Chairman and CEO of Spot Image in the press release: “These guys rock!” i-cubed is a distributor for SPOT and ESRI uses it in ArcWeb services. My sense is that both company see a benefit in having an imagery player that’s not GeoEye or DigitalGlobe, though the former is a partner with i-cubed.
From what I gather i-cubed is an enhancer, repackager and distributor of imagery, in some ways not unlike what GlobeXplorer was before it acquired a data provider (AirPhotoUSA,), then was itself acquired by one (DigitalGlobe). Do I think i-cubed will be acquired? Yes, but for now these two companies are helping ensure it’s not “right away.” And, of course, there’s no statement of the nature or size of the investments from SPOT and ESRI.