Published: Sat, January 12, 2019
Finance | By Loren Pratt

SpaceX to lay off 10 per cent of workforce to become leaner

SpaceX to lay off 10 per cent of workforce to become leaner

SpaceX, the pioneering space technology company led by Elon Musk, will lay off about 10 percent of its more than 6,000 employees. "Either of these developments, even when attempted separately, have bankrupted other organizations", SpaceX said in a statement. "This means we must part ways with some talented and hardworking members of our team", the company said.

"We are grateful for everything they have accomplished and their commitment to SpaceX's mission", the company continued.

The company said it will "part ways" with some of its manpower, citing "extraordinarily hard challenges ahead".

The news of the layoffs came after SpaceX's first successful launch of 2019 from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California on Friday morning.

The SpaceX founder shared the first real images of the prototype from its Texas launch site, telling Twitter followers it is "not a rendering".

There's still some fine-tuning to be done on the prototype, but if all goes as planned the Starship could begin tests flights in a couple of months.

But paying for those ambitious plans will be a challenge.

At the end of previous year, SpaceX valuation rose to $30.5 billion after initiating a $500 million equity sale, according to the Wall Street Journal. Musk dug it up and reposted saying that this is pretty much how the Starship Hopper, the rocket that will test the systems for the interplanetary Starship, will work.

The Journal, citing industry sources, said SpaceX takes in about $2.5 billion a year.

The statement did not disclose the size of the layoffs, but a company source, speaking on background, estimated the cuts at 10 percent of the workforce.

Elon Musk's Space X company is financially healthy and was recently valued at almost U.S. $30 billion.

The company is also delivering supplies to the International Space Station (ISS). Founded by Musk, SpaceX makes most of its money from multibillion dollar contracts with NASA and satellite launches.

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