Space tourism provider Virgin Galactic is set to go public on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on Monday. It will be the first human spaceflight company to trade publicly and will without doubt not be the last.
According to SEC filings first reported on by CNBC, Virgin Galactic shareholders approved a merger with Social Capital Hedosophia on Wednesday. With the merger approved, it sets up the space tourism company to list on the NYSE on Monday.
The merger with Social Capital Hedosophia was announced in July. The agreement saw the investment firm take a 49% stake, while Virgin Galactic founder Sir Richard Branson retained a 51% controlling stake in the company. With the merger now approved, the new company has a valuation of $1.5 billion.
The new company will trade on the NYSE under the ticker symbol SPCE.
Virgin Galactic is in the final stages of testing its SpaceShipTwo spaceplane ahead of its first commercial flight. The spaceplane can carry up to six passengers along with the two pilots.
Tickets aboard a SpaceShipTwo flight are currently priced at $250,000 per person. However, with additional SpaceShipTwo spaceplanes currently under construction the increased supply and reduced operating costs may drive the price down.
The company currently has a backlog of over 600 customers waiting for a chance to fly aboard the first commercial flights to the edge of space. When they do, they will receive one of the company’s new flight suits. The suits were designed in collaboration with sports fashion brand Under Armour. It is one part of the company’s push to make the experience one that is worth the considerable price tag.