Maxar’s action plummeted after delaying the launch of WorldView Legion satellites

Close up images of ongoing dredging operations around the Ever Date in the Suez Canal, captured by the company’s WorldView-3 satellite on Saturday, March 27, 2021.

Technology Maxar

Shares of space company Maxar Technologies fell into commercialish Thursday after announcing another delay in launching its next-generation imaging satellites.

“We have decided to delay the launch from the fourth quarter of 2021 to next year,” said Dan Jablonsky, CEO of Maxar, during the company’s earnings call Wednesday.

Maxar’s stock fell 15% from its previous close of $ 34 a share. The stock was scaling back in recent months, with Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley each giving it buy ratings, but it is far from its highs above the $ 50 a share hit in January.

WorldView Legion is the company’s constellation of six imaging satellites and is the key to the company continuing to earn lucrative contracts from U.S. defense and intelligence agencies. But the Legion’s first launch has been pushed several times, Maxar has now set a “calendar between March and June,” Jablonsky said.

Canaccord Genuity lowered its valuation of Maxar from holding purchases after the announcement, emphasizing that the delay calls into question the company’s long-term financial goals.

“It is now more likely that the Legion constellation will not be fully operational with significant capacity utilization until 2023,” wrote Austin Moeller, an analyst at Canaccord Genuity in a note to investors. The company has a $ 40 price target on its shares, down from its previous $ 50 target.

Jablonsky cited two major factors for the delay, saying the instruments for the first two satellites came “later than anticipated” from supplier Raytheon, and that the Covid pandemic continues to be “a difficult operating environment for our suppliers. it’s for us. “

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