Astra to become the first publicly traded space launch company on NASDAQ
(2 February 2021 - Astra) Astra and Holicity today announced a definitive business combination agreement that will result in Astra becoming a publicly-traded company.
The transaction reflects an implied pro forma enterprise value for Astra of approximately $2.1 billion. Upon closing, the transaction is expected to provide up to $500 million in cash proceeds, including up to $300 million of cash held in the trust account of Holicity and an upsized $200 million PIPE led by funds and accounts managed by BlackRock.
“This transaction takes us a step closer to our mission of improving life on Earth from space by fully funding our plan to provide daily access to low Earth orbit from anywhere on the planet," said Chris Kemp, Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Astra.
“I have long believed space provides an unmatched opportunity to benefit and enrich society,” said Craig McCaw, Chairman, and CEO of Holicity. “Astra’s space platform will further improve our communications, help us protect our planet, and unleash entrepreneurs to launch a new generation of services to enhance our lives.”
In December 2020, Astra joined a small, elite group of companies that have made it to space. With over 50 launches in manifest across more than 10 private and public customers, including NASA and DOD, Astra has booked over $150 million of contracted launch revenue. Astra will begin delivering customer payloads this summer and begin monthly launches by the end of this year.
Following the closing of the transaction, the combined company will continue to be led by Founder and CEO Chris Kemp. It is expected that Craig McCaw will join Astra’s board of directors.
The proposed transaction, which is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2021, has been unanimously approved by the boards of directors of both Astra and Holicity and remains subject to approval by Holicity’s stockholders. Upon the closing of the transaction, the combined company will be named Astra and will be listed on NASDAQ under the symbol "ASTR."
Holicity, which currently holds over $300 million of cash in trust, will combine with Astra in a transaction that is estimated to result in a pro forma enterprise value of approximately $2.1 billion. Cash proceeds in connection with the transaction will be funded through a combination of Holicity’s $300 million cash in trust and a $200 million fully committed common stock PIPE at $10.00 per share, led by funds and accounts managed by BlackRock. Astra’s existing shareholders will hold approximately 78% of the outstanding shares of common stock of the combined company immediately following the consummation of the transaction, assuming no redemptions by Holicity’s existing public stockholders. Astra’s founders will hold their interest in the pro forma combined company through super-voting (10:1) common stock.
Completion of the proposed transaction is subject to approval of Holicity’s stockholders and other customary closing conditions, including a registration statement being declared effective by the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). The transaction is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2021.
Deutsche Bank Securities acted as lead financial advisor and capital markets advisor to Holicity. BofA Securities acted as lead placement agent on the PIPE, financial advisor and capital markets advisor to Holicity. PJT Partners acted as sole financial advisor to Astra and also as a placement agent on the PIPE.
Winston & Strawn LLP acted as legal advisor to Holicity. Ropes & Gray LLP acted as legal advisor to Astra.
Astra was founded in October 2016 with the mission of launching a new generation of space services to improve life on Earth.
Holicity Inc. is a special purpose acquisition company (“SPAC”) sponsored by Pendrell Holicity Holdings Corporation, which is a subsidiary of Pendrell Corporation, a permanent capital vehicle whose controlling shareholder is Mr. Craig O. McCaw.