Inspired by the moon landing anniversary? Take a punt on Aussie space stocks

Inspired by the moon landing anniversary? Take a punt on Aussie space stocks

Max Blenkin

With the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, investors with an eye to the stars could well consider Australian space industry stocks.

The finance sector website Kalkine Media has taken a look at three Australian space companies listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX), noting that the global space industry is growing, along with Australia’s part in it.

Globally, space attracted an estimated $350 billion in annual revenue last year, with market experts believing revenues would be in the range of $600 billion to $1.8 trillion by 2040.

“With big names like NASA, Boeing, Airbus, SpaceX and Lockheed Martin syncing with the space industry, the number of private players in the game has steadily increased, giving a healthy competitive edge to the dominators,” Kalkine Media said.

“Amid competition from strong space economies like the US and Europe, Australia needs to enter global supply chain, enhance local value chains and de-limit distances while meeting obligations and security needs and required knowledge, the Aussie economy is pacing towards sustaining itself in the global space industry.”

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Of the three ASX-listed Aussie space companies examined, all have big plans but none are yet high flyers.

Perth-based Sky and Space Global (ASX: SAS) is planning a global constellation of up to 200 small communications satellites, providing internet and other services.

 

It has already launched three satellites, which it said are performing above expectations, and has signed more than 40 agreements. It has also developed much of the infrastructure it will need for revenue producing operations.

SAS has had its share of challenges, including financing its operations and taking on two new Australian resident non-executive directors to contribute towards the company’s ongoing operations and growth strategy.

SAS shares remain in a voluntary suspension and were last traded on 3 April at a price of 2.8 cents. Trading could resume on Monday.

Beam Communications Holdings (ASX: BCC) was founded in 2002 in Melbourne following a request by Telstra and Iridium for a satellite terminal for the Australian market using the Iridium Satellite Constellation.

It’s now a wholly owned subsidiary of World Reach Limited and now markets satellite communications equipment around the world and is looking to expand into India.

BCC said there is growing demand for its equipment across the mining, shipping, oil and gas, and disaster management sectors. BCC shares last traded for 28 cents.

Kleos Space (ASX KSS) is actually based in Luxembourg with a listing on the ASX last August.

Kleos offers a very specialised service – its proposed 20 satellite constellation will monitor maritime radio frequencies and report on ship location, even for vessels not broadcasting automatic identification system (AIS) signals.

That’s a service of considerable interest to national security organisations, emergency services and port operators.

Kleos plans to launch the first four CubeSats into low-Earth orbit as the primary payload aboard a Rocket Lab Electron launch from New Zealand next month.

Earlier this month, the company signed an agreement with L3 Harris Technologies to market its product suite to the US government agencies. It has also appointed an agent for the growing South American market. Kleos shares last traded at 39 cents.

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