Virgin Orbit receives another investment from Sir Richard Branson at a 12% rate of interest

Zero gravity, but not zero interest: Sir Richard travels into space via Virgin Galactic, another venture of his.

Virgin Orbit Holdings Inc NASDAQ:VORB received another US$10mln funding boost from Sir Richard Branson.

Late Monday, his Virgin Investments Limited (VIL), vehicle purchased a senior secured convertible bond. This note can be converted into Virgin Orbit shares in the future.

It comes after a US$25mln cash injection from Branson in November, and another US$20mln boost via a secured loan in December.

After an unsuccessful mission last month, the company stated that it would use the net proceeds to fund its working capital. The rocket carrying its commercial payloads failed to reach orbit. This was supposed to be the first ever orbital space launch from UK soil.

The annual interest rate on the note is 12.0%. This is significantly higher than the notes issued in late 2013. It is unlikely that the company will keep it long, given that its net cash flow was US$46mln, and its negative cashflow was US$52mln as of its most recent quarter.

Reports indicate that Virgin Orbit failed in November to raise equity capital. This was after pledged all its assets to Branson as security for the secured note.

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