The race for the first listed manned space company is over, and Virgin Galactic has won.
The Company will list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange as part of a minority takeover of Social Capital Hedosophia; Founded by former Facebook manager Chamath Palihapitiya as part of his exploration of alternative strategies for venture capital investment as head of social capital, the company was acquired for takeover purposes – according to a report in The Wall Street Journal .
About two years ago, the SPAC was formed with a commitment of $ 600 million and is expected to make a $ 800 million commitment to Virgin Galactic, according to the Journal's report.
Unlike other start-up companies such as Elon Musk's Space Exploration Technologies Corp. Virgin Galactic has done this focused on suborbital launches to conduct experiments and bring tourists into space. SpaceX is increasingly investing in the development of lunar and interplanetary travel launches and commercial applications such as satellite Internet access.
Jeff Bezos & # 39; Blue Origin is also reportedly planning space tourism while completing several commercial and state launch contracts (and a lunar lander).
Virgin Galactic was initially in talks with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for a capital injection of approximately $ 1
Palihapitiya interfered according to the Journal . The billionaire financier had to do something with the capital he raised for Hedosophia SPAC, as the investment instruments had to invest or be wound up within two years.
The Virgin Galactic business was probably a tempting destination. The company already has approximately $ 80 million in commitments from people around the world ready to pay $ 250,000 for the privilege of a suborbital trip to the exosphere.
Like most privately-funded space companies, Virgin Galactic was a billionaire's favorite project, and the Journal estimated that Branson has already put nearly $ 1 billion into the company.
The new $ 800 million means that SPAC is not the only investor in Virgin Galactic. Palihapitiya is also investing $ 100 million in the company. In return, the vehicle will own about 49% of the space business since it is traded on the open market.