Astra Space, Virgin Galactic Stock Prices Plunge on Launch Delays, Large Quarterly Losses

Astra Space and Virgin Orbit both saw their shares decline sharply on Thursday after announcing that their next launches would be delayed into 2023 and reporting large quarterly losses.

Astra Space announced that it is abandoning its Rocket 3.3 small-satellite booster, which failed on two of its three most recent flights. It will move to a larger Rocket 4 capable of carrying more payloads. The company reported a $53 million Q2 net loss. The company is looking to raise an additional $100 million through a stock sale.

Astra Space hit a high of $1.68 on Thursday. It was trading at $1.31 as of 11 a.m. EDT on Friday, a decline of 22 percent.

Virgin Galactic stock plunged 14.5 percent as the company delayed additional flight tests of its VSS Unity suborbital vehicle from Q4 2022 to Q1 2023. Commercial flights have been delayed into Q2 of next year. Flight tests of a second SpaceShipTwo named VSS Imagine won’t begin until the middle of next year. Commercial flights of that vehicle could begin as early as Q4 2023, but could slip into 2024.

Virgin Galactic reported a Q2 loss of $111 million. The company also announced it would raise another $300 million through a stock sale.