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SpaceX expected to become more valuable than Tesla, Morgan Stanley survey finds

SpaceX expected to become more valuable than Tesla, Morgan Stanley survey finds

20 Oct 2021

Starship prototype SN15 returns for a landing on May 5, 2021 after a high-altitude flight test.


Between Elon Musk’s two largest companies, investors and experts have a long-term favorite.

Most “institutional investors and industry experts” surveyed by Morgan Stanley expect SpaceX to become more valuable than Tesla and see it as a more attractive investment.

“The majority of our clients (by survey and client discussions) believe SpaceX could ultimately command a higher valuation and significance than even Tesla,” Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas wrote in a note Tuesday.

Tesla has a market value of $858 billion. SpaceX reached a valuation of $100.3 billion after a secondary share sale, CNBC reported earlier this month.

Morgan Stanley issued the survey about Musk’s companies with two questions: “Which do you think is a more attractive investment from here?” and “Which do you think has the potential to be a more valuable company over the long term?”

Out of 32 responses, 63% of those Morgan Stanley surveyed answered SpaceX to both questions.

“From our investor conversations, the sentiment on SpaceX has increased substantially along with the company’s valuation in the private market,” Jonas said.

SpaceX: The “Apex Player” in space

Jonas said that “investors are beginning to appreciate the potentially wide-ranging use-cases for SpaceX’s reusable launch architecture across communications, transportation, earth observation and other space-related domains.”

SpaceX is “clearly seen” as the “Apex Player” in the global space industry, Jonas said. The sentiment shows in its soaring valuation, which makes it the second-most valuable private company in the world, according to CB Insights.

The company’s valuation has spiked in the last few years as SpaceX has raised billions to fund work on two capital-intensive projects: Starship and Starlink.

Starlink is the company’s plan to build an interconnected internet network with thousands of satellites, known in the space industry as a constellation. The project is designed to deliver high-speed internet to consumers anywhere on the planet.

SpaceX has launched 1,740 Starlink satellites to date. The network has more than 100,000 users in 14 countries who are participating in a public beta. Service is priced at $99 a month.

Starship is the massive, next-generation rocket SpaceX is developing to launch cargo and people on missions to the moon and Mars. The company is testing prototypes at a facility in southern Texas and has flown multiple short test flights.

Reaching orbit is the next step in testing the rocket. SpaceX is awaiting regulatory approval for its next launch.

“In our view, having access to nearly unlimited sources of capital will be an extremely important part of the narrative around building the space economy,” Jonas added.

Morgan Stanley, in a separate note Monday, also said that “more than one client” has suggested that Musk may become the first trillionaire, because of SpaceX.

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