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SpaceX is to lay off 10% of its employees



Elon Musk's rocket company said its finances are healthy, but that it has to make savings so that its most ambitious plans can succeed.

"To continue delivering to our customers and succeeding in developing interplanetary space probes and a global space-based Internet, SpaceX needs to become a leaner company," the company said in a statement. "Each of these developments, even when attempted separately, has bankrupted other organizations, which means we have to part with some talented and hard-working members of our team."

"We are grateful for everything they have achieved and for their commitment to SpaceX Mission," the company said. "This action is taken only because of the extremely difficult challenges and would otherwise not be necessary."

The layoffs were reported by the Los Angeles Times on Friday.

SpaceX has a booming business embarking on unprepared supplies to the US International Space Station through contracts with NASA. The company also supplies satellites for orbit through contracts with US military and commercial companies. SpaceX and its competitor Boeing will fly NASA astronauts to the ISS sometime this year.

The company earns tens of millions of dollars per launch. SpaceX was recently estimated at $ 30.5 billion, after a $ 500 million stock sale in December. The Wall Street Journal also took over $ 250 million of debt last year, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The new SpaceX products, however, are expected to cost billions. In September, Musk expects SpaceX to spend between $ 2 and $ 1

0 billion to develop an ultra-powerful spacecraft and missile system that has recently been renamed "Starship" and "Super Heavy".

SpaceX plans to use the technology to fly tourists into space and possibly send people to Mars someday. Musk said last year that Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa made a "non-trivial" but undisclosed deposit to meet six to eight artists on a lunar journey one day. Musk predicted that this trip could already take place in 2023.
SpaceX is also developing a constellation of satellites that could someday send high-speed Internet to Earth. Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX's Chief Operating Officer, said during a TED talk last year that she expected the constellation of satellites to cost about $ 10 billion.

The company has already made progress on both projects.

Last year two Starlink demo satellites were deployed, and SpaceX intends to deploy the first operational satellites to join a constellation of thousands sometime in 2019.

And Musk recently shared images of a Starship-powered model, planning to conduct short "hop" test flights this year at a facility in Texas.


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