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Virgin Galactic’s stock soars and then levels off

Virgin Galactic at NYSE
British billionaire Richard Branson rings the New York Stock Exchange’s First Trade Bell to celebrate the listing of Virgin Galactic Holdings as a publicly traded company. (Virgin Galactic Photo / Courtney Crow)

Like the rocket plane it operates, Virgin Galactic’s stock price blasted off on its first day as a publicly traded company, and then glided to a somewhat lower altitude.

The company, founded 15 years ago by British billionaire Richard Branson, now bills itself as the “world’s first and only publicly traded commercial human spaceflight company.” It went public today thanks to a merger with a special-purpose vehicle known as Social Capital Hedosophia, or SCH.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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