Virgin Orbit has pushed back a deadline for rescue bids as the commercial satellite business founded by Sir Richard Branson scrambles to avoid bankruptcy.
Sky News has learned that the company and its advisers have told potential buyers of the company that they must now submit their final offers by May 19, a few days later than the previous timeline.
The disclosure comes as Sir Richard’s Virgin Group and other stakeholders await the outcome of a process that followed the disastrous failure of the first mission from the Cornwall spaceport in January.
Virgin Orbit went public in the US in 2021 through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company that valued it at $3.7bn (£3bn), but its valuation has plummeted in recent months.
It filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy a few weeks ago.
This week, it said it had received 30 expressions of interest to save the company, “including multiple proposals to continue the business and retain current staff in a conglomerate”.
The names of the parties involved are not yet known, but many observers believe a rescue is unlikely without some form of government support.
Dan Hart, CEO of Virgin Orbit, said: “I am pleased with the number and quality of expressions of interest we have received, which we feel reflects the innovative ideas and hard work the team has put into developing this unique system Work.”, said this week.
“I look forward to continuing to work with those who have expressed interest and with other parties as we approach the final bid deadline.”
A Virgin Orbit spokesman declined to comment on the revised tender deadline.