Up, up and away. Elon Musk’s space firm raises an extra $850 million, but could have had raised billions of dollars if needed
Elon Musk’s SpaceX has closed another mammoth funding round that has brought in hundreds of millions of dollars in cash.
It comes after SpaceX in February 2020 began seeking $250 million (£193m) in a funding round that would value the company at about $36bn, up from $33.3bn. However it ended up raising nearly $2 billion, which valued SpaceX at $46 billion.
In 2019 SpaceX had also raised $1.33bn in three funding rounds, making it one of the world’s most valuable private companies.
But CNBC has reported, citing people familiar with the financing, that SpaceX has now completed another fund raising round last week that brought in an extra $850 million.
The company raised the new funds at $419.99 a share, those people said, and SpaceX’s latest funding round represents a 60 percent rise in the company’s valuation from its previous round in August 2020.
SpaceX valuation has skyrocketed to about $74 billion.
SpaceX did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.
In addition to SpaceX further building a war chest for its ambitious plans, company insiders and existing investors were able to sell an additional $750 million in a secondary transaction, one of the people told CNBC.
Notably, SpaceX raised only a portion of the funding available in the marketplace, with one person telling CNBC that the company received “insane demand” of about $6 billion in offers over the course of just three days.
And SpaceX needs the money, as it is heavily involved in two capital-intensive projects.
Starlink is its ambitious project to build an interconnected constellation network to deliver high-speed internet to consumers anywhere on the planet.
The company disclosed in an Federal Communications Commission filing last week that Starlink has “over 10,000 users in the United States and abroad,” after three months of its public beta.
And there is Elon Musk’s pet project to get to Mars, via its Starship rocket program.
SpaceX is currently building and testing prototypes in Boca Chica, Texas, and has successfully launched multiple Starship prototypes, landing them safely after short flights to about 500 feet altitude.
That said, its two most recent high-altitude flights, despite passing multiple development milestones, exploded on impact during attempted landings.
SpaceX had first revealed MK1 of the giant stainless-steel space vehicle to the world back in September 2019. The Starship is designed to ferry dozens of passengers to the Moon and Mars, in line with a long-term NASA project called Artemis.