Space-transportation startup Rocket Lab has struck a deal with a special-purpose acquisition company in order to go public. The company has decided to merge with Vector Acquisition Corp. At the time of the deal, the company was valued at around USD 4.1 billion including debt. The deal is expected to be closed in the second quarter. Once done, the startup will list on the Nasdaq under the ticker RKLB. The startup is expecting USD 320 million in cash once the deal is complete. Rocket Lab CEO Peter Beck termed the deal a milestone and said that it will help the company realize the ambition of creating a billion-dollar business vertical in the space industry.
“This is a milestone in the true sense. The deal will accelerate will help us unlock the full potential of space. We will enhance our abilities to achieve new milestones through our spacecraft and launch platform.” Earlier in September last year, Vector Acquisition had raised USD 300 million in an initial public offering. Vector Acquisition is backed by Vector Capital, a technology focused private equity firm. Vector trades under the ticker name VACQ and shares of its SPAC rose significantly after the deal was announced. While Beck will continue in the role of chief executive officer of Rocket Lab, reports suggest that Vector Capital’s chief investment officer Alex Slusky is expected to join as the board of directors of the company.
Rocket Lab has created a name for itself and is now seen as a front runner among the group of small-launch providers. While there is very little scope of competition when it comes to sending huge satellites into higher orbits, the same is not true when it comes to launching smaller satellites. There are around 100 ventures around the world that are providing platforms to launch lighter satellites. Notably, defense giant Lockheed Martin Corporation is among the backers of the startup. It has already launched 97 satellites for private companies and government organizations.