ABL adds $ 200 million to its Series B fundraiser
The round was led by investors in its existing $ 170 million Series B, which closed in March. Investors in the initial round included Baltimore-based T. Rowe Price Associates Inc., Boston-based Fidelity Management & Research Co., and a third investment management firm the company did not name.
The round brings the company’s total funding to $ 420 million and nearly doubles its valuation, which was $ 1.3 billion in March.
âWe are delighted with our partnership with ABL Space Systems. We believe the global space economy has significant long-term growth potential, âsaid Jason Adams, portfolio manager of T. Rowe Price’s Global Industrials Fund, in a cycle statement. âWe believe ABL has a leadership team, a set of technologies and a product strategy that should deliver long-term competitive advantages. “
ABL Space Systems plans to use the funding to increase production of the RS1 launcher, the company’s flagship rocket, and to conduct research and development of future systems. The company is preparing for its first launch before the end of the year from Kodiak Island, Alaska, with its launch period ending December 15.
âOur team is working tirelessly to prepare RS1 for launch, and it is because of their hard work that we have been able to grow ABL so quickly,â said Harry O’Hanley, founder and CEO of the company, in an article. on the increase on LinkedIn. âRight now we are focusing on the laser to reach orbit with RS1. ”
ABL Space Systems was founded in 2017 with the aim of developing low cost launchers for the small satellite industry. Its RS1 rocket is designed to carry 1,350 kilograms, or 2,976 pounds, in low earth orbit. A dedicated launch using the RS1 costs $ 12 million.
Along with its rocket, the company has developed a launch system, called GS0, which allows it to transport the RS1 around the world using conventional sea containers.
Although it has never launched a rocket, ABL Space Systems is popular among customers.
The company said it has a manifesto of more than 75 active contracts with 14 separate clients across commerce, defense, intelligence and science. Some of its clients include Lockheed Martin Corp., based in Bethesda, Maryland, and L2 Aerospace, based in Melbourne, Florida.
More recently, ABL Space Systems was selected for its first contract with NASA. The company will be the launch supplier for NASA’s cryogenic demonstration mission, it announced on September 16. The mission is expected to launch in 2023 and will demonstrate the transfer into space of cryogenic liquid hydrogen, a high-performance propellant used in space exploration.
Financial terms of the contract were not disclosed.
âWe do a lot of work at ABL focusing on the needs of our customers for the immediate future,â said Dan Piemont, president, chief financial officer and founder of ABL Space Systems, in a statement regarding the contract. âScience missions like this allow our team to look further ahead.
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