Orbital SciencesÂ Chairman, President and CEO David Thompson said the company plans to remain true to its mission of lowering costs to access outer space after completing its estimatedÂ $5 billion merger withÂ ATK, the Washington Post reported Monday.
â€œFrom a strategic standpoint, this merger will create a much larger and more capable but still highly innovative, agile and competitive space and defense systems manufacturer,â€ Thompson said in an investorsâ€™ call to announce the transaction, according to the report.
Amrita Jayakumar writes that some analysts see the partnership with ATK as the next step in the Dulles-based startup space companyâ€™s evolution in the crowded aerospace sector.
According to the report, defense analyst Loren Thompson believes the deal marks a coming-of-age for what he called were â€œentrepreneurial space enthusiastsâ€ at the outset.
â€œOrbitalâ€¦ has gradually evolved to become a well-established and diverse player in the aerospace industry,â€ he told the Post.
Thompson said the consolidation also validates what it takes to keep in step with tier-one contractors and survive in a highly competitive industry.
Space policy analyst Linda Billings told the publication that Orbital saw the transformation as a key step to its business growth strategy and that she believes the combined company will remain “very new and different from the traditional government contractors.”