Rocket Lab ($RKLB) reported earnings at market close on Thursday. The New Zealand-based launch company recorded a quarterly record revenue of $55.5M, up 392% YoY.
Key Rocket Lab Q2 2022 #s
- Adj. EBITDA = -$8.5M
- Cash & cash equivalents = $542.5M
- Backlog = $531.4M
- Net loss = $37.4M
Revenue By Segment
- Space Systems = $36.4M
- Launch Services $19.1M
“We are encouraged by broad-based momentum that continued across our space systems business which comprised 66% of our revenue in the second quarter. Space Systems continues to be a significant growth area, with construction of our satellite constellation production facility in Long Beach substantially complete,” Rocket Lab CEO Peter Beck said in the investor update.
Rocket Lab launched three successful Electron missions this quarter delivering a total of 37 satellites, including CAPSTONE, a lunar pathfinding mission for Artemis. The launcher also deployed satellites for BlackSky, Unseenlabs, E-Space, and Swarm, three of which are repeat customers, and struck a deal with HawkEye 360 to launch 15 satellites over the next two years.
Rocket Lab’s first mid-air catch attempt (then immediate loss) of an Electron booster with a helicopter stood out as a point of pride, despite dropping the booster after making contact.
In Q2, Rocket Lab broke ground on its new Neutron launch vehicle production complex in Virginia. The 250,000 sq. ft facility will support Neutron production, assembly, and integration and include a launchpad.
Peter Beck at SmallSat
CEO Peter Beck commented on deep space economics and reusability during his keynote at the SmallSat conference in Logan, Utah earlier this week.
Beck credited CAPSTONE for pushing the company to expand its spacecraft capabilities. “What we intended to do with the Lunar Photon spacecraft is to really lower the barrier for interplanetary missions,” he said. “The biggest thing that came out of that was there’s a spacecraft now that, for some tens of millions of dollars, that you can buy and go and visit an asteroid, go and visit the moon, go and visit another planet. That’s never existed before.”
He was also confident that reusability will be a permanent fixture in Rocket Lab’s capabilities. “The biggest learning from the last one is that it is going to work,” he remarked.
Fun Fact: The company said the upper stage from NASA’s CAPSTONE mission is “now touring the solar system” at a distance of 1.3 million km away.