Virgin Galactic Stock Takes Off on Successful Test Flight
It’s been over two years since Virgin Galactic’s (NYSE: SPCE) last test flight, but the company just pulled off a major milestone over the weekend. Virgin Galactic completed its third spaceflight on Saturday, inspiring space enthusiasts and investors alike.
The news also sent Virgin Galactic shares into the stratosphere, with the stock up 18% as of 12 p.m. EST Monday.
Here’s what Virgin Galactic investors need to know.
The spacecraft, known as VSS Unity, was able to reach Mach 3 after being released from the mothership, VMS Eve. VSS Unity achieved an altitude of 55.45 miles with human pilots CJ Sturckow and Dave Mackay aboard, before returning to Earth. The Unity is capable of carrying up to six passengers in addition to the pilots, and Virgin Galactic has ambitious plans for commercial space travel and tourism.
— Virgin Galactic (@virgingalactic) May 22, 2021
“Space travel is a bold and adventurous endeavor, and I am incredibly proud of our talented team for making the dream of private space travel a reality,” Virgin Galactic CEO Michael Colglazier said in a statement. “We will immediately begin processing the data gained from this successful test flight, and we look forward to sharing news on our next planned milestone.”
The company also delivered a scientific payload as part of NASA’s Flight Opportunities program, generating a small amount of revenue in the process. Virgin Galactic will now proceed to review and analyze all of the test data that was gathered from the mission and move on to the next milestone.
The announcement comes months after Virgin Galactic had to abort the previous test flight due to an issue related to engine ignition. Virgin Galactic stock plummeted back in December following that aborted mission.
One small step closer to commercialization
The successful flight is an important milestone on Virgin Galactic’s path towards commercialization. The company remains in the development phase and reported no revenue in the first quarter, leading to a net loss of $130 million. Virgin Galactic had $617 million in cash at the end of March, which will help fund operations for many quarters.
Virgin Galactic must achieve two more milestones before securing regulatory clearance from the FAA to commence regular flights. Billionaire founder Sir Richard Branson plans to ride on one of the forthcoming test flights, which is around the time that Virgin Galactic plans to re-open ticket sales.
Where to invest $500 right now
Before you buy Amazon, or Netflix, or Apple, consider this...
The team at Motley Fool first recommended each of those stocks more than a dozen years ago!
- They discovered Netflix for $1.85 per share, back in the days of DVDs by mail.
- And recommended Amazon at $15.31 in 2002, before most people were comfortable using credit cards online.
- And even hit Apple at $4.97 per share, about a month before the release of the very first iPhone.
Check out where those stocks are today. The bottom line: a $500 investment in all three of these stocks would be worth more than $200,000 today!
And here’s why that’s important: The Motley Fool’s flagship investing service Stock Advisor just announced their top 10 “best buys now” across the entire stock market. Whether you’re starting with $100, $500, or more, you’ll want to get the full details!