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SpaceX’s internal finances before the implementation of the Starlink program show that it invested a lot of money in the moon landing program

SpaceX’s confidential financial statements for 2018 and 2019 provide an early glimpse into how much the company may rely on its Starlink business unit and bringing its Starship rocket online to achieve positive cash flow.

While the comprehensive balance sheets are five years old, they provide insight into the operations of one of America’s most important and secretive private companies and help reveal how and how much money the company uses. The company’s revenue has reportedly grown from unprofitable about $2 billion to $9 billion in 2023, and is expected to reach $15 billion in 2024, with earnings reaching $3 billion. Sources familiar with the matter told Reuters in November.

2018 and 2019 were critical years for the company: In February 2018, SpaceX launched its Falcon Heavy rocket for the first time; A critical flight test of the Crew Dragon capsule, but the same capsule exploded a month later during a ground test. SpaceX may be feeling the pressure to provide safe, reliable spacecraft for NASA astronauts so it can start getting more dollars from the multibillion-dollar government contracts it wins for human transportation services.

In the same year, SpaceX launched the first batch of 60 Starlink satellites. The service has become an integral part of the company’s overall plan, which centers on establishing a human colony on Mars or, as CEO Elon Musk often puts it, “expanding the light of consciousness across the universe.”

So, let’s take a look.

The company had revenue of $1.98 billion and $1.45 billion in 2018 and 2019, respectively, but had operating net losses of -$308 million and -$501 million, respectively, according to its consolidated balance sheets for those years reviewed by TechCrunch. The reason for the decline in revenue from 2018 to 2019 is that due to changes in accounting regulations, SpaceX changed the method it recognizes revenue from a percentage of the total contract completed to a percentage of each aspect of each contract completed, TechCrunch reviewed the document explains. SpaceX declined to comment for this story.

Most of the losses come from “cost of revenue,” a broad category that can cover all costs associated with the production and distribution of a product or service. It also includes the costs of its personnel and contractors, utilities and rent. SpaceX even factors depreciation on the cost of the reusable launch vehicle hardware into this equation.

The company also spent a lot of cash on research and development – $559 million in 2018 and $661 million the following year. Companies typically include personnel costs in this line item (aka, it’s the “development” portion of R&D). But in the case of SpaceX, the financial statements indicate that these costs mainly relate to the Starlink and Starship programs. The Starlink program completed a milestone in 2019, when SpaceX launched the first batch of operational Starlink satellites in May of that year. The company ended 2018 with $868 million in cash and cash equivalents, compared with $990 million in 2019.

The balance sheet spans the years since SpaceX won a NASA contract to deliver astronauts and cargo to the International Space Station. So it’s probably not surprising that U.S. government funding in the form of contracts with NASA accounted for 37% of revenue in 2018 and 83% in 2019.

The company, whose valuation surged to $180 billion late last year, has made truly huge strides since deploying 60 Starlink satellites in May 2019: There are currently more than 5,500 active satellites deployed in orbit, with more than 250 million customers. This is certainly reflected in its booming sales.

The arrival of Starship may change that again. The company is currently conducting orbital flight tests of the massive rocket at a Texas launch site, which is necessary to maintain a launch cadence for second-generation satellites. These spacecraft will weigh nearly twice as much as first-generation satellites, and the additional spacecraft in orbit will help increase end-user capacity.

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk admits Interview May 2022 Starship “is the only thing capable of carrying Starlink 2 satellites.”

“falcon [9] It doesn’t have the volume required for Starlink 2, nor does it have the mass to orbit,” he said.

There are numerous questions about SpaceX’s recent financial health. The company uses its own rocket, the Falcon 9 workhorse, to launch Starlink satellites, which means it can launch space-based internet satellites at unprecedented speeds. Because the rocket boosters are reusable, the company can also amortize the cost of the hardware over time. But the longer it takes to bring Starship online, the longer it will take to roll out Starlink to millions of users around the world.

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