Virgin Orbit is another one of Sir Richard Branson’s companies. It is a firm that will go public via a special purpose acquisition corporation vehicle. What is the total valuation of the firm? Around a cool $3.2 billion. This is an interesting company, another one of Richard Branson’s companies that will have gone public through a SPAC.
The other firm, Virgin Galactic, is one that has been a meme stock and has had a bumpy ride. Remember that Chamath and Richard Branson, both sold a significant portion of their shares in Virgin Galactic. In fact, Chamath Palihapitiya sold all of his shares in Virgin Galactic as of earlier this year. The leaders of a space startup selling a substantial portion of their shares do not provide as much confidence to the public. At the same time, we do know that Branson was able to complete a trip and this did boost the stock. The stock is back down to $26 at the time of this writing.
Remember that Virgin Galactic, a space tourism company is operating in a sector that is quite competitive. Giants like Space X, Blue Origin, and others also aim to provide space tourism. This important to note because Virgin Orbit will also operate in a competitive arena.
Virgin Orbit will trade under the symbol “VORB”.
Virgin Orbit Competes With SpaceX Among Others in Satellite Launches
SpaceX has a strong hold in the satellite launch market with over 29% market share in the over $8billion dollar launch market. SpaceX has a strong lead in this sector and is expected to remain a leader in this new space race. SpaceX has compelling technology that enables it to conduct regular launches at a lower cost.
So where does Virgin Orbit fit into the picture? It should be able to capture a portion of demand remain a player. Various firms and entities rely on firms that range from Virgin Orbit to RocketLab to send their respective shipments. As launches in this sector are quite expensive, they range from $35 million to over $95 million based on the size of the rocket, Virgin Orbit and other firms still play a crucial role.
The firm wants to stay relevant by stepping into data, analytics, and IoT segment services. It aims to launch several satellites that are focused on IoT and analytics in 2023.
The firm has already launched satellites for several government entities (DOD, Netherlands AirForce, and more). The firm uses similar techniques to Virgin Galactic launches. It will take off from a regular aircraft runway, the jet will release the rocket, and the rocket moves to where it needs to go. This unique form of launching allows it to be more nimble and agile. It can launch from most places on the planet as long as there is the proper runway. The company also notes that this particular launch capability can reduce weather impact issues.
Is the Company Profitable?
Of course not. The company is far from profitable. But does the company have some form of earnings? Yes, it is expected to have at least $15 million in earnings. The firm expects to capture revenues over $2 billion by late 2026. So will it get the gold early on and be a worthwhile investment? It looks like there might be other companies with a better risk to reward ratio. But it is true that this company’s stock might have some swings in the near future as more individuals seek to speculate on stocks related to Virgin Galactic. Still, over the long term, it looks like other stocks may serve you better. They may provide more return, more capital appreciation, and others may even provide solid dividends.