Elon Musk announced on Thursday (2 November) that SpaceX‘s Starlink satellite internet business unit has achieved break-even cash flow, marking a significant milestone for the four-year-old venture.
Musk also claimed that Starlink is now a majority of all active satellites and will have launched a majority of all satellites cumulatively from Earth by next year.
The exact duration of the break-even milestone, whether it’s for the quarter or a specific period, was not specified.
The announcement raises the question of whether SpaceX may consider taking Starlink public through an IPO, a move that Musk previously mentioned the company would undertake once the cash flow became more predictable.
Earlier this year, SpaceX’s president and chief operating officer, Gwynne Shotwell stated that Starlink had already achieved a cashflow positive quarter in 2022.
Starlink, which operates around 5,000 satellites, has rapidly expanded thanks to SpaceX’s rockets and vertical integration strategy. This integration has allowed Starlink to grow to around two million subscribers across various sectors, including consumers, maritime, and aviation.
Starlink has recently gained attention for its role in international conflicts, such as the war in Ukraine and the conflict between Israel and Hamas. SpaceX introduced a defence-focused version of Starlink called Starshield, indicating the Pentagon’s interest in procuring satellite internet capabilities.
SpaceX is currently valued at approximately $150bn, and the company reported revenues of $1.4bn last year, The Wall Street Journal reported in September.
GlobalData’s Thematic Intelligence: The Space Economy report puts the value of the industry in 2022 at $450bn and predicts a compound annual growth rate of between 6% and 10% from then until 2030.
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