Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Galactic sold more of his ownership of the space tourism company this week, dumping a 10.4 Million stake to fund his other ventures.
The shares of the space company fell nearly 3% on Friday as the billionaire started dumping his shares from August 10-12 to fund his ventures, according to SEC filing through his Virgin Investments group.
The move comes a month after the space tourism company completed its first fully crewed test flight into space with Branson on board.
On Wednesday, Morgan Stanley downgraded the stock to underweight from equal weight, saying in a note to clients that the excitement around Virgin Galactic should cool off as the flight schedule enters a quieter period. Credit Suisse issued a downgrade on Thursday.
According to Refinitiv data, Branson’s Virgin Investments is the largest shareholder of the space tourism company and has a stake of about 22% as of June. Currently, accroding to Yahoo Finance, Branson’s is left with 46.3 million shares worth roughly 1.3 billion dollar
“The Virgin Group continues to be the largest single shareholder in Virgin Galactic, intends to use the net proceeds from this sale to support its portfolio of global leisure, holiday and travel businesses that continue to be affected by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, in addition to supporting the development and growth of new and existing businesses.” Branson’s parent company said in a statement.
Currently Virigin Galactic’s share is trading in a day range of $25.05 to $26.30.