Tai: Scaled acquisition is “extraordinarily positive”

Alex Tai of Virgin Galactic gave the keynote address Saturday morning at the NewSpace 2007 conference and briefly mentioned the news that Northrop Grumman is acquiring Scaled Composites. Tai said that a formal announcement is planned for Monday, but that Virgin is “extraordinarily happy” and “extraordinarily positive” about the acquisition. He said that they couldn’t ask for a better company to work with, and that Northrop planned no changes to the status quo, including the management structure and operating plans.

3 comments to Tai: Scaled acquisition is “extraordinarily positive”

  • I’m not surprised that NG isn’t messing with a system that appears to work very well. The acquisition couldn’t have been very cheap, my guess is that it was in the $100-300M range, maybe higher. I wouldn’t spend that kind of money on a company that I thought needs a management overhaul. My take on it is that NG has been using Scaled unofficially as their “Skunkworks” division for some time now, and wanted to a) make it official, and b) pump some extra resources into a highly visible, competent, and successful division.

  • Tai: Scaled acquisition is “extraordinarily positive”…

    Virgin Galactic’s Alex Tai says that Northrop Grumman’s buyout of Scaled Composites is a very positive development….

  • Peter Shearer

    At first I was shocked… Not about the NG acquisition part (which makes perfect sense considering MOST of Scaled’s business in the last few years has been Black Projects for DARPA and NG).

    I just never imaged Burt Rutan giving up control of his company! But as I think about it… Mike Melvill was a part owner and considering that he is around 60 now and has achieved a spaceflight in his already mindblowingingly successful career he’s probably looking to retire and have some of that investment money pay out.

    What’s Burt’s motivation? I’ll bet you that he wanted to liquidate his part of the company so as to reinvest it into The SpaceShip Company or at least into his other “pet projects.” I think I can safely say that Burt is not someone who cares about wealth or fame, he could easily afford a mansion and a ferrari yet chooses not to. Let’s face it, he wants to go into space… He wants to walk on the moon for crying out loud!

    I’ll bet that’s why he choose to sell his company (at least his stock in it anyway)… Actually, I wouldn’t be surprised if he starts talking to Space Adventures and ends up going to the Space Station on Soyuz or even goes on the Circumlunar flight…

    This is my theory…

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