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LAUNCH PAD
U.S. Bank Helps Fuel Future Space Flight as Bank behind SpaceX
by Staff Writers
Hawthorne CA (SPX) Jul 26, 2012


File image: SpaceX Dragon capsule.

Bankers joined scientists on the edge of their seats in May as the SpaceX Dragon capsule successfully berthed with the International Space Station. The SpaceX Dragon was the first privately-owned spacecraft in history to deliver supplies to the Space Station astronauts.

U.S. Bank was the first lender and bank partner of Hawthorne-based Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX). With a senior credit facility that supports their day-to-day business, U.S. Bank will continue to support SpaceX as they expand private space flight, delivering supplies to the space station in the years following the retirement of NASA's Space Shuttle program.

"We were thrilled to watch SpaceX make history," said Sean Foley, regional chairman of U.S. Bank in southern California.

"The team at SpaceX deserves tremendous recognition not only for their pioneering role in this new era of space flight, but also for creating a model for efficiency and environmental consciousness in the rockets and capsules they have built. We're proud to be their bank."

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket features enhanced reliability, responsiveness and cost over competitors' offerings. The Dragon capsule is a free-flying, fully reusable spacecraft. Upon its return to Earth, the capsule remains intact and is capable of making a return trip to space.

"We were the first bank to extend a credit facility to them with terms that were flexible for the company so they could maintain cash flow to purchase equipment, stock inventory and manage their day-to-day working expenses," Foley added.

"This was significant in that the company had limited operating history, but we were able to structure a facility that worked for them and us."

"U.S. Bank has been an extraordinary partner," said Gwynne Shotwell, President of SpaceX. "While SpaceX continues to push the boundaries of space technology, U.S. Bank's credit facility has really allowed us to run our business effectively."

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