The company’s electron rocket carrying the CAPSTONE mission takes off from New Zealand on June 28, 2022.
The second quarter was a mixed bag for space companies, with some companies making steady progress while others suffered setbacks.
Most space stocks, many of which went public through SPAC deals last year, are struggling despite the industry’s growth, having lost 50% or more since their market debut. The changing market environment and rising interest rates have hit technology and growth stocks hard and weighed on space stocks.
CNBC breaks down the latest quarterly reports for Aerojet Rocketdyne, AST SpaceMobile, Astra, BlackSky, Iridium, Maxar, Momentus, Mynaric, Redwire, Rocket Lab, Satellogic, Spire Global, Telesat, Terran Orbital, ViaSat, Virgin Galactic and Virgin Orbit.
Satellite imagery company Planet has yet to report its latest quarterly results as the company follows a fiscal calendar that started on Feb. 1.
Year-to-date share performance: -3%
Aerojet Rocketdyne continues to derive a large portion of its revenue from the space sector. The propulsion specialist derives much of its $528.5 million revenue in the second quarter from defense-related contracts. President and CEO Eileen Drake specifically confirmed that Aerojet’s backlog added a United Launch Alliance contract for 116 of the RL10 engines needed to power the Vulcan series of rockets, many of which have been ordered by Amazon.
Year-to-date share performance: +36%
The satellite-to-smartphone broadband company reported revenue of $7.3 million and total cost of ownership of $35.4 million, both metrics slightly higher than the same period last year. The company has $202.4 million in cash as AST continues to work towards launching its Blue Walker 3 test satellite in September. So far, $86.6 million has been spent on the demonstration.
Year-to-date stock performance: -88%
Small rocket and spacecraft maker Astra reported another severe quarterly loss, suffering a $48.4 million slump in Adjusted EBITDA. The company posted sales of just $2.7 million and announced the surprise cancellation of its Rocket 3.3 series and a launch pause until at least 2023 as it focuses on development of the larger variant, Rocket 4.0. Astra has $200.7 million in cash.
Year-to-date stock performance: -52%
Seattle-based satellite imagery specialist BlackSky reported revenue of $15.1 million for the quarter, nearly double a year ago, and an adjusted EBITDA loss of $8.8 million. The company raked in a big win in the form of an NGO deal for its images, worth up to $1.02 billion over a decade.
Year-to-date share performance: +9%
The satellite communications provider had revenue of $174.9 million, operating EBITDA of $105.9 million, and nearly 1.9 million total subscribers — up 17%, 12%, and 16%, respectively compared to the same period last year. Matt Desch, CEO of Iridium, emphasized on the earnings call that the “business has performed well,” with the company “well positioned to grow…even if recent concerns about an economic downturn prove true.” The company also received a significant award from the Pentagon’s Space Development Agency during the quarter, which Desch expects will generate $133 million in additional revenue over seven years.
Year-to-date stock performance: -58%
The spacecraft maker generated just $50,000 in revenue due to a canceled customer contract and reported an Adjusted EBITDA loss of $18.3 million. While Momentus has approximately $109 million in cash, the company plans to reduce its quarterly cash burn by cutting some expenses and delaying long-term R&D projects as it focuses on solving issues raised during its recent mission were found with his spaceship.
Year-to-date stock performance: -41%
The laser communications maker has yet to start releasing quarterly results after going public in November. In the second quarter, Mynaric announced an agreement with defense company L3Harris, which will take a 7.2% stake in the company and invest about $11 million.
Year-to-date stock performance: -54%
The space infrastructure conglomerate posted revenue of $36.7 million for the quarter, up 14% year over year, with an Adjusted EBITDA loss of $4.1 million. Notably, Redwire “expects to deliver positive Adjusted EBITDA in the second half of 2022,” even as it continues to invest in infrastructure expansions like a newly opened robotic arm manufacturing facility in Luxembourg.
Year-to-date stock performance: -54%
The multinational small rocket and spacecraft maker reported revenue of $55.5 million, up 36% sequentially, primarily from its space systems division. It also increased its total backlog to $531.4 million. The company reported an Adjusted EBITDA loss of $8.5 million but has more than half a billion in cash. Rocket Lab CEO Peter Beck said on the company’s earnings call that Rocket Lab continues to “see strong demand for Electron launches.”
Year-to-date stock performance: -53%
The satellite imaging company has yet to start releasing quarterly results since it went public in January. During the second quarter, Satellogic put four more satellites into orbit via a SpaceX launch, increasing its fleet to 26 so far. The company aims to have 34 in orbit by early 2023.
Year-to-date stock performance: -55%
Small satellite maker and data specialist Spire posted second-quarter revenue of $19.4 million and reported an adjusted EBITDA loss of $7.3 million. For full year 2022, the company expects to exceed $100 million in annual recurring revenue from subscribers.
Year-to-date stock performance: -61%
The Canada-based satellite communications operator reported revenue of approximately $143 million (converted from Canadian dollars at current rates), down slightly from a year ago, with an order backlog of approximately $1.5 billion. Telesat posted adjusted EBITDA earnings of approximately $112 million. The company noted that in anticipation of final manufacturing and financing agreements, capital expenditures “could increase significantly” to fund the development of its Lightspeed network.
Year-to-date stock performance: -59%
The spacecraft maker posted revenue of $21.4 million for the quarter and reported an Adjusted EBITDA loss of $14.8 million while growing its backlog to $224.1 million. Terran Orbital began supplying satellite buses, the main part of a spacecraft, to Lockheed Martin under a Pentagon contract and supported the launch of NASA’s CAPSTONE spacecraft, which it helped build.
Year-to-date share performance: -16%
The satellite broadband provider, whose fiscal year begins in April, reported quarterly revenue of $678 million and adjusted EBITDA earnings of $132 million — the former up 2% year over year and the latter down 17%. Viasat noted that it continues to see pressures on its finances from supply chain bottlenecks and inflation. The company plans to launch its ViaSat-3 satellite later this year.
Year-to-date stock performance: -55%
The space tourism company reported an adjusted EBITDA loss of $93 million on negligible revenue. Virgin Galactic announced a further delay in the launch of the commercial service, pushing it back to the second quarter of 2023 as the company continues to refurbish the carrier aircraft beginning its spaceflights. Virgin Galactic reported $1.1 billion in cash and announced plans to sell up to $300 million of common stock.
Year-to-date stock performance: -50%
The alternative rocket launcher did not report revenue but completed a launch the day after the end of the second quarter and will post $12 million of that in the next period. Virgin Orbit posted an Adjusted EBITDA loss of $34.4 million and $122.1 million in cash on hand. The company expects to complete two more launches this year, bringing the total to four in 2022.