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Elon Musk. Source: Christophe Gateau/DPA/Picture Alliance via Reuters.
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  • Elon Musk says SpaceX’s space internet venture Starlink will pursue a public listing when cash flow is more reasonably predictable
  • His remark came in response to a question about early investment opportunities for long-term Tesla shareholders
  • The spin off was originally floated last year by SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell
  • Starlink aims to offer fast internet speeds globally using a network of satellites in low-earth orbit

Elon Musk said this morning that SpaceX’s space internet venture Starlink will pursue a public listing when its cash flow is more reasonably predictable.

“Going public sooner than that would be very painful,” the billionaire chief executive of Tesla said in a Tweet.

“Will do my best to give long-term Tesla shareholders preference.”

He was responding to a question posed on Twitter, where a user asked: “Any thoughts on Starlink IPO we would love to invest in the future. Any thoughts on first dibs for Tesla retail investors?”

The idea of spinning off Starlink for an initial public offering was originally floated last year by SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell.

“Right now, we are a private company, but Starlink is the right kind of business that we can go ahead and take public,” Shotwell told Bloomberg in February last year.

“That particular piece is an element of the business that we are likely to spin out and go public.”

Starlink aims to offer fast internet speeds globally using a network of tens of thousands of satellites in low-earth orbit.

Musk has previously said that the company, headquartered in Redmond, Washington, would be a key source of funding for his broader plans. Those include developing the Starship rocket to fly paying customers to the moon and, ultimately, colonising Mars.

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