Elon Musk’s SpaceX Raises $ 1.16 Billion In Equity Funding
Elon Musk’s SpaceX has raised about $ 1.16 billion in equity, according to a modified filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
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The filing follows a nearly $ 850 million funding round that was disclosed in February that would have raised the aerospace company’s valuation to around $ 74 billion. In August, the company raised its biggest funding round to date of $ 1.9 billion, according to Reuters.
The billionaire, who also founded and runs Tesla, hinted in February that an initial public offering for SpaceX would come once the company could “predict cash flow reasonably well.” Demand for SpaceX’s stock centers around its global Internet service Starlink made up of a worldwide constellation of satellites and its Project Starship, a rocket under development that will take humans on future missions to the Moon and Mars.
“SpaceX has to cross a deep chasm of negative cash flow over the next year or so to make Starlink financially viable. Every new constellation of satellites in history has gone bankrupt. We hope to be the first not to do so,” Musk said. “Starlink is an incredibly difficult technical and economic endeavor. However, if we don’t fail, the cost to end users will improve every year.”
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Last week, Starlink launched its 10th successful batch of 60 satellites as the company strives to make near-global coverage available by the end of 2021 and full coverage by 2022.
Starlink has launched more than 1,000 satellites into orbit and has more than 10,000 users in the United States and abroad since its “Better Than Nothing” beta launched nationally and internationally in October. The service will be offered first in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom
According to Musk, Starlink’s internet speeds will double to around 300 megabits per second later this year, while latency – the time it takes to send data from one point to another – will drop to around 20 milliseconds. The company also plans to connect Starlink to moving vehicles, ships and planes.
While Musk confirmed in April that Starlink was selling satellite dishes at a much lower price than it costs for the technology to manufacture, he disputed that those costs are “falling rapidly.”
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Meanwhile, Musk said in December that he remained “very confident” that SpaceX’s spacecraft will land humans on Mars by 2026. So far, SpaceX has successfully launched four prototypes of spacecraft, including SN8, SN9, SN10 and, more recently, SN11, although all of them are be terminated by flaming explosions.
In the aftermath of the SN9 explosion, the House Transportation Committee said it would investigate the launch, which regulators say violated U.S. safety requirements and SpaceX’s test license. SN10 is the only spacecraft iteration that successfully blocked the landing after performing a “belly flop” maneuver.
SpaceX is a direct competitor of Amazon Blue Origin from CEO Jeff Bezos, who successfully launched and landed NS-15, the latest iteration of his New Shepard rocket, on Wednesday. The mission, which included the first-ever replacement astronaut crew who performed a series of pre-launch and post-launch procedures, served as a “verification step” as it strives to dispatch its first human passengers in space.
Blue Origin did not announce an exact date for the first crewed flight, but confirmed after Wednesday’s test that it would take place “soon”.