Planning a Mars mission, a global telecommunications network for inexpensive internet service and creating an interplanetary hedge against World War Threeisn’t cheap, so it’s no wonder that SpaceX is closing on $500 million in new cash through a financing round led by Fidelity, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the round.
Responding to clamoring demand from investors and their own desires to cash out (at least a little bit), existing shareholders in the company are creating several special purpose vehicles to sell shares on the secondary market — with our sources saying those secondary offerings could total an additional $500 million.
Shares for the company are selling for somewhere between $160 and $170, according to our sources.
One big buyer of SpaceX shares is reportedly SpaceX chief executive and founder Elon Musk, who multiple sources have said is investing $100 million to buy up shares.
News of the initial fundraising effort was first reported by CNBC, which pegged the valuation of Musk’s space exploration venture at roughly $21.5 billion.
That’s a huge jump from 15 years ago, when the company’s shares were issued at around 5 cents and Elon Musk said it was struggling to get cash in the door, basically living week-to-week.
Secondary offerings are controlled sales of existing shares held by early employees and investors who are looking to cash out of the company. It’s the only way to realize some value of shares before an initial public offering.