Astra has laid off 25% of its workforce because the starting of the quarter and is reallocating no less than 50 engineers and manufacturing employees away from its launch enterprise to deal with spacecraft manufacturing, the corporate mentioned Friday.
The reallocation and layoffs are anticipated to delay testing of the under-development Rocket 4 and Launch System 2.0, Astra mentioned. The affected workers labored within the firm’s launch, gross sales and administration and “shared companies” departments. Workforce reductions are anticipated to avoid wasting the corporate greater than $4 million per quarter starting within the fourth quarter of this yr.
Astra, which is going through dwindling money reserves, is little question on the lookout for a technique to additional cut back working bills whereas additionally bolstering its spacecraft engine enterprise, the one enterprise unit that at present has a near-term likelihood of producing income. The spacecraft engine expertise is sourced from Astra’s acquisition of propulsion developer Apollo Fusion, which closed the day Astra went public in July 2021.
Certainly, Astra mentioned that it had closed 278 dedicated orders of the Astra Spacecraft Engine product by means of the top of March, which totals round $77 million in contracts as soon as the engines are delivered. A “substantial majority” of those orders can be delivered by means of the top of 2024, the corporate mentioned.
“We’re intensely targeted on delivering on our commitments to our prospects, which incorporates making certain we have now adequate assets and an satisfactory monetary runway to execute on our near-term alternatives,” Chris Kemp, CEO and founder, mentioned in an announcement.
Astra additionally mentioned that it had engaged funding financial institution PJT Companions as a monetary advisor because it appears to be like for extra capital to proceed operations. That features “potential strategic investments within the Astra Spacecraft Engine enterprise to strengthen Astra’s stability sheet,” the corporate mentioned. Individually, Astra mentioned it had raised $10.8 million in a debt sale to funding group Excessive Path Capital.
In response to preliminary second-quarter monetary outcomes, Astra is predicted to have revenues between $0.5-$1 million, whereas having simply $26-$26.5 million in money readily available.
This isn’t the primary time main layoffs have hit the area firm. Final November, Astra introduced it had let go of 16% of its workers, additionally to deal with launch and spacecraft engines.