Virgin Orbit lays off 661 Southern California workers

The company filed for bankruptcy and has until May 4 to receive offers for its assets.

Virgin Orbit lays off 661 Southern California workers

Virgin Orbit Holdings Inc. has laid off 661 employees at its Long Beach and Mojave facilities.

Satellite-launching company (Nasdaq : VORB), filed a notice to state officials stating that it would be laying off 603 employees at its facility located at 4022 E. Conant St., in Long Beach. It also stated that 58 workers were being laid off at 1314 Flightline, in Mojave.

The Long Beach company announced that the layoffs would be permanent as of April 3.

Virgin Orbit filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy on April 4, after being unable to raise more funding following a failed mission in early this year. The company had announced that it would cut 675 positions, or 85%, of its workforce, before filing for bankruptcy.

Virgin Orbit announced on Wednesday that it had filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court of the District of Delaware. It proposed a deadline of May 4, for indications of interests in its assets. It requested that the court approve the bid procedures including the interest deadline and a deadline for bids of May 14, 2020.

Virgin Orbit CEO Dan Hart stated in a press release that the company continues to make significant progress. He also said they remain committed to positioning the business to successfully complete the sale process for the benefit of everyone. We expect that the filing of the Chapter 11 plan and disclosure will allow us to quickly conclude the process after we complete the sale of our company. We are committed to working closely with our creditors and investors throughout the process to ensure that everyone gets the best outcome.

On May 24, a court hearing will be held to determine whether the bankruptcy plan has been approved.

Virgin Orbit was founded by Richard Branson in 2017. Instead of using rockets that blast off from the earth, Virgin Orbit used a Boeing 747 aircraft carrying rockets to launch satellites. Before its unsuccessful attempt to launch satellites in British soil, Virgin Orbit successfully launched 33 satellites. The 747 was launched successfully but the second stage engine failed to reach orbit due to an anomaly. Virgin Orbit lost nine satellites during the failed attempt, which was later blamed on a dislodged air filter.