XCOR Lost ULA Engine Contrac

6 Jul 2017

Author: Parabolic Arc

Despite laying off its 21 remaining employees, XCOR Aerospace isn’t dead yet. But, it’s not in real good shape, either.

It turns out that a major blow to the company was the loss of a contract with United Launch Alliance (ULA) to develop an upper stage for the Vulcan booster.

The primary impetus for the layoffs, Acting CEO and XCOR Board member Michael Blum told me, is the loss of a contract for engine development that the company had with United Launch Alliance. “The proceeds should have been enough to fund the prototype of Lynx [the company’s planned spacecraft], but ULA decided they’re not going to continue funding the contract. So we find ourselves in a difficult financial situation where we need to raise money or find joint developments to continue.” ULA declined to comment.

Blum is quick to add, though, that the company is still a going concern. “Committed, early investors of the company are making resources available to have a core team on a contract basis to see through business development, joint venture, and fundraising opportunities.”

Blum says that XCOR has two basic lines of business – building rocket engines and components, and the development of its Lynx spacecraft. “Most of the interest I’m seeing right now is in the Lynx project,” he says.

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