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Capitalism in space: Apparently short of cash because of his cancellation of a $1 billion investment space deal with Saudi Arabia, Richard Branson has hired a finance firm to find him new capital for his two space companies Virgin Galactic and Virgin Orbit.
Sources said this weekend that Sir Richard was seeking funding that would value Virgin Galactic and Virgin Orbit, which launches satellites for commercial customers, at a combined sum of well over $2bn (£1.55bn).
The precise amount that he is looking to raise has yet to be determined, but people close to the process suggested it would be at least $250m (£193m), representing a minority stake.
The structure of a deal could see new shareholders injecting money into either, or both, Virgin-branded space companies.
I will not be surprised if Branson gets the investment capital for Virgin Orbit. I will also not be surprised if he has trouble finding anyone willing to invest a lot in Virgin Galactic. In fact, this shortage in capital might spell the end of this fourteen year effort at building a reusable spacecraft designed to provide suborbital tourism.