Impatient capital: Share selloff in launcher provider Astra shows public markets’ difficulty with rockets

by Peter B. de Selding

PARIS — Before the current wave of stock-market introductions by startup space companies, it would have been considered madness to go to the public equity markets with a pure-play space-launch vehicle business.

Aside from the historically low margins of rocket launching, the public markets feature investors likely to be spooked at the sight of an explosion of the vehicle in whose promise they have invested. It takes patient capital to stay the course in the face of a fireball.

Italy’s Avio SpA was the first to make the . . .

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