A historic Virgin Galactic (NYSE: SPCE) aircraft successfully reached space and returned to Earth on Sunday morning. Sir Richard Branson, the founder of Virgin Galactic, was among the crew members aboard the VSS Unity.
Shares of Virgin Galactic Holdings Inc rose as high as 9.35% in premarket trade Monday, a day after Branson and five crewmates flew suborbitally in the firm’s VSS Unity rocket-powered spaceplane.
Last week, SPCE shares climbed 9.5% to $49.20. SPCE stock has stabilized in a turbulent way in recent weeks after more than doubling from mid-May lows. Virgin Galactic has a $57.61 handle purchase point from a profound base.
Expect volatility with SPCE shares before and after Monday’s open as the stock has been on a downward trend, and this successful flight may be a reversal catalyst for the company’s share price.
Wall Street experts forecasts
Still, Wall Street analysts project the average price target for the SPCE stock to reach $36.91 in the next 12 months, representing a 24.98% downside over the current price of $49.20, with the highest forecast being $51, while the lowest price target – $18.
Out of 11 TipRanks analysts’ Virgin Galactic Holdings stock ratings in the last three months, for instance, four recommend to ‘Buy,’ six suggest to ‘Hold,’ and interestingly, one opts to ‘Sell.’
Through Friday, Virgin Galactic’s shares had risen 107.3% year to date.
The journey in detail
The Virgin Galactic trip acted as a launchpad for commercial space tourism flights, and the creator achieved his ambition of traveling to the edge of space onboard Unity 22 on Sunday.
The Unity crew experienced several minutes of weightlessness before returning to Earth during a live-streamed journey on Sunday.
Branson tweeted following his arrival:
“Space is for all humanity, which is why we’re giving YOU the chance to win 2 seats on one of the first @virgingalactic flights to space! ENTER NOW – all donations go to non-profit @spacehumanity.”
The successful trip was the space tourism company’s 22nd test flight and the first since gaining FAA clearance to transport private passengers to the edge of Earth’s atmosphere.
As the notion of visiting space becomes more realistic, at least for the ultra-wealthy, traders and investors may begin to scour the market for other firms involved in space advancement and innovation.