Small launch startup Astra to go public at $2.1 billion valuation

Astra plans to turn into the primary small rocket maker to go public, the corporate introduced Tuesday, after reaching area for the primary time in December. It’ll turn into the second publicly traded area enterprise after Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic.

The Northern California-based rocket agency’s “3.2” launch car blasted to space for the first time in December from its Kodiak, Alaska launch website, a key take a look at mission that “far exceeded our staff’s expectations,” Astra CEO Chris Kemp advised reporters on the time. The launch demo, although simply barely lacking orbit, propelled Astra right into a small group of companies which have reached area.

The corporate has 50 buyer launches lined up, and over $150 million of contracted launch income up to now. Now, Astra is merging with particular objective acquisition firm (or SPAC) Holicity Inc. to take its launch enterprise public in a deal that may worth Astra at $2.1 billion. Astra’s ticker might be ASTR when the deal closes within the second quarter of 2021.

Kemp, NASA’s former chief know-how officer, mentioned the merger and public submitting unlocks a brand new stage for the corporate: “over the subsequent 2-3 years, we’ll dramatically improve our launch schedule with a purpose of every day launches by 2025,” he tweeted Tuesday. It additionally marks “a step nearer to our mission of bettering life on Earth from area by totally funding our plan to supply every day entry to low Earth orbit from anyplace on the planet.”

The SPAC merger groups Kemp’s Astra up with billionaire Holicity CEO Craig McCaw, who’s anticipated to hitch the corporate’s board of administrators. It additionally permits Astra to faucet into $500 million in money after the deal closes.

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