Elon Musk’s SpaceX Stake Drops Slightly Even As He Gains More Voting Control

SpaceX chief Elon Musk virtually participating in the MWC Barcelona last year.

This is not investment advice. The author has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Wccftech.com has a disclosure and ethics policy.

A SpaceX filing with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) made last month has revealed that while the company's founder and chief executive officer Mr. Elon Musk saw his ownership percentage slightly decrease over the course of the year, he still managed to increase his voting control for the company's stock. Musk set the company up in 2000, and since then it has become the only entity - public or private - that regularly launches and lands its first stage rocket boosters and conducts crewed missions for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), while also operating the world's largest satellite constellation with thousands of spacecraft.

Elon Musk Owns 42.3% Of SpaceX's Outstanding Stock Reveals FCC Filing

The latest filing comes roughly a year after the previous one in 2020 which also provided details of Musk's SpaceX ownership. Back then, SpaceX had applied to the FCC for permission to launch its second generation Starlink satellites on the Starship launch vehicle system. This filing 'blew up' for a lack of better wording, with the company's competitors vehemently opposing it for a variety of reasons as they cited uncompetitiveness, a violation of FCC rules and others in the subsequent months.

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This time around, SpaceX is seeking the Commission's approval to expand its satellite internet service to use additional frequencies to provide mobile satellite services (MSS). Currently, the Starlink user terminals use higher frequency bands to communicate with the satellites, allowing them to send vast amounts of information quickly to Internet servers. The MSS bands on the other hand are lower in the frequency chain and they allow for a different kind of service, which includes voice and text based communications.

An excerpt from SpaceX's recent FCC fling in July 2022 showing Mr. Musk's shareholdings. Image: SpaceX filing in the Federal Communications Commission International Bureau Fling System Filing Number: SAT-MOD-20220725-00074

The MSS filing reveals that as of late July 2022, Mr. Musk held a 42.3% stake in SpaceX, and in addition to this, his shares also allowed him to hold voting control of 78.2% of the company's outstanding stock. These figures show that over the course of a year, little has changed for the aerospace company's ownership structure, as back then, Musk had held 43.61% of the company's shares alongside a voting control of 77.97%.

However, since 2018, Musk's ownership has gradually declined, as a November 2018 FCC filing revealed that the executive had owned 50.4% of SpaceX.

The FCC disclosure comes right after SpaceX raised more capital in July. A filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (FCC) revealed that the company had raised $250 million in equity, with five investors taking part. This was one of two capital runs by SpaceX this year, with the previous which took place in June having brought a cool $1.7 billion in funds through 74 investors. Cumulatively, SpaceX has raised roughly $2 billion in 2022 - after having raised another $1.8 billion last year.

Starship is crucial to SpaceX's future and particularly Starlink especially as SpaceX moves forward with second generation satellites. While it currently launches roughly 50 - 60 first generation satellites through the Falcon 9 rockets, the second generation spacecraft are larger and heftier. As a result, they require a larger rocket, and on this front Starship, which will be one of the largest rockets in the world when it becomes operational, is integral to SpaceX's low Earth orbit (LEO) internet satellite constellation.

SpaceX is currently aiming to conduct a highly anticipated Starship orbital test flight, and it has already transported the rocket's Booster 7 first stage prototype to the test pad after an earlier accident forced it to remove the rocket's engines for inspection.

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