Astra stock surges 30% after the rocket builder reached orbit successfully

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  • Shares of rocket builder Astra traded lower on Monday after the company reached orbit for the first time over the weekend.
  • The company’s rocket LV0007 launched from the Pacific Spaceport Complex in Kodiak, Alaska, carrying a test payload for the US Space Force.
  • “Getting into orbit was really hard. Astra and only a few other companies — I can count them on one hand — have ever done that,” Astra CEO Chris Kemp told reporters on Monday.

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Shares of rocket builder Astra traded lower on Monday after the company reached orbit for the first time over the weekend.

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The company’s rocket LV0007 launched on Saturday from the Pacific Spaceport Complex in Kodiak, Alaska, carrying test payloads for the US Space Force.

“Getting into orbit was really hard. Astra and only a few other companies — I can count them on one hand — have ever done that,” Astra CEO Chris Kemp told reporters on Monday.

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“We are now focused on increasing the production and launch cadence of our systems and deliveries for our customers,” Kemp said.

Astra stock jumped 42% in trading from its previous close of $9.53. With unusually heavy trading volume, the stock has been trading anywhere from 30% to 40% since hitting the highs. Indeed, it was trading around 31% higher around 10:00 a.m. ET.

The launch makes Astra the latest among a small group of US companies to reach orbit with a privately funded rocket, joining SpaceX, Rocket Lab and Virgin Orbit.

The company’s rocket is 43 feet tall and fits into the small rocket segment of the launch market. Kemp noted that its Rocket 3.3 variation can carry about 50 kilograms of payload into low Earth orbit, with its planned Rocket 4.0 version expected to increase that capability. Astra eventually aims to launch several of its smaller rockets, aiming to launch one rocket a day by 2025 and reduce its $2.5 million price point even further.

Astra went public earlier this year after completing a SPAC merger, raising funds for the company to build its production line of small rockets, expand its facilities in Alameda, California, and develop its spacecraft and spaceport business lines. raised funds for

Kemp said the successful launch of LV0007 shows that further changes to its rocket’s 3.3 variation will not receive much attention. The company will share “more soon” on its schedule for its next launch, Kemp said, with the LV0008 vehicle expected to be integrated for the mission soon.

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