Exciting news to close out Friday’s trading, at least for everyone who ever wondered why we don’t go back to the moon. Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin landed a $3.4 billion contract to build a new spacecraft capable of sending astronauts to the moon and bringing them back afterward. Blue Origin wasn’t the only gainer, however, as it was part of a team that took home the win. Blue Origin, along with Boeing (NYSE:BA), Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT), Draper, Honeybee Robotics, and Astrobotic, landed the contract over Blue Origin’s own protests.
Blue Origin wanted two winners, but NASA—who offered the contract—noted that there were issues with its own budget that precluded such a possibility. Further, Blue Origin won’t exactly profit from this contract, as its own head of lunar lander operations, John Couluris, noted that Blue Origin will contribute “well north” of that amount in funding itself. The lander built will be part of the Artemis V mission, now set for launch in September 2029. Lockheed Martin closed down 0.29% in Friday’s trading, while Boeing slipped 0.89%.
NASA administrator Bill Nelson noted that the move is part of “…the infrastructure that will pave the way to land the first humans on Mars.” Further, Nelson described the move as “…no less ambitious than when President Kennedy dared a generation of dreamers to journey to the moon.” Meanwhile, the losing team in this exchange, made up of Northrup Grumman (NYSE:NOC) and Leidos (NYSE:LDOS) imprint Dynetics, also took hits in their share prices. Northrup Grumman closed down 0.04%, while Leidos dropped 0.66%.
The stock hit the second lightest here appears to have the least value for investors. Lockheed Martin is rated a Hold by analyst consensus, and its average share price of $495.08 gives it 8.94% upside potential. Meanwhile, the stock hit the second hardest, Leidos, offers the most value. Analyst consensus calls it a Moderate Buy, but with an average price target of $102.36, it offers a 30.56% upside potential.