Virgin Galactic again delays space tourism flights, to second quarter 2023

Virgin Galactic again delays space tourism flights, to second quarter 2023

The VMS Eve carrier aircraft takes off from Spaceport America in New Mexico, carrying the VSS Unity spacecraft on July 11, 2021.

Galactic Virgo

Space tourism company Galactic Virgo Thursday postponed the start of its commercial flights for another three months, citing delays in refurbishment work on its carrier aircraft.

Virgin Galactic has announced that commercial service is being pushed back to the second quarter of 2023, the latest setback for the start of its space tourism business. The company previously pushed back the date for the fourth quarter of this year to the first quarter of next year.

Its stock has fallen more than 10% in after-hours trading from its close of $8.19 per share. The stock is down more than 70% in the past 12 months.

The company currently has a carrier aircraft, or “mothership,” called VMS Eve, which is about 14 years old and undergone a long renovation. The jet mothership plays a key role in Virgin Galactic flights by carrying the company’s spacecraft up to around 50,000 feet for launch.

Virgin Galactic announced an adjusted EBITDA loss of $93 million in the second quarter, higher than the loss of $77 million in the previous quarter. The company has $1.1 billion in cash. He also said he plans to sell up to $300 million of common stock, which the company says is intended to add “financial flexibility going forward.”

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