Low earth Orbit News Space News

Astra to acquire Apollo Fusion to reach new orbits

Apollo Fusion will operate as a separate business and continue to serve its customers in the space industry, while Astra will also incorporate the tech into its services.
Apollo Fusion ACE thruster operating with Xenon propellant

Launch vehicle developer Astra has moved to acquire propulsion company Apollo Fusion in a transaction valued up to $145m. This acquisition allows Astra to provide launch and space services beyond low Earth orbit (LEO), to medium Earth orbit, geosynchronous, and lunar orbits.

Chris Kemp, Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Astra, said: “In addition to increasing Astra’s total addressable market for launch services, the acquisition of Apollo Fusion accelerates Astra’s ability to efficiently deliver and operate spacecraft beyond low Earth orbit.”

Reid Hoffman, Partner at Greylock and Lead Investor in Apollo Fusion, added: “Scale is what makes innovation matter. I’m excited that Apollo Fusion will be a key enabler of Astra’s hyperscale space platform.”

Mike Cassidy, Founder and CEO of Apollo Fusion, stated: “Propulsion systems open new destinations. Our team is excited to combine the flexibility of in-space propulsion with the world’s most responsive launch provider.”

In addition to Cassidy, the acquisition brings a team with experience from companies such as Google, Tesla, and SpaceX, with individuals who have developed, designed, and manufactured hardware flying on over 2,000 satellites in orbit.

Under the agreement, Astra is acquiring Apollo Fusion for a purchase price of $50m: $30m in stock and $20m in cash. Additionally, there is potential for earn-outs of up to $95m: $10m in employee incentive stock, $10m in cash for reaching technical milestones, and $75m ($60m in stock, $15m in cash) for reaching revenue milestones. PJT Partners is acting as a financial advisor to Astra in connection with this series of transactions.  

This transaction will close after Astra’s business combination with Holicity is completed, and is expected to be accretive to revenue starting this year.