Musk, Bezos, Branson lead billionaires in space race

Billionaires leading the Space Race

In his State of the Union address, President Trump touted the Space Force and called on lawmakers to fully fund a plan aimed at sending U.S. astronauts to the lunar surface over the next four years.

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“In reaffirming our heritage as a free nation, we must remember that America has always been a frontier nation,” Trump said. “Now we must embrace the next frontier, America's manifest destiny in the stars. I am asking the Congress to fully fund the Artemis program to ensure that the next man and the first woman on the moon will be American astronauts – using this as a launching pad to ensure that America is the first nation to plant its flag on Mars."

As the administration pushes forward, it will have to compete with a crop of billionaires looking to win the space race as well.

FOX Business takes a look at the big names firing up the sector.

#1 Richard Branson

Branson is the founder of the Virgin Group, the parent company of the spaceflight company Virgin Galactic.

The company went public last October at $12 per share.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
SPCEVIRGIN GALACTIC HOLDINGS INC.14.29-0.01-0.07%
UAUNDER ARMOUR INC8.25+0.25+3.12%

Prior to the space company merged with Social Capital Hedosophia (SCH) to create the world’s first publicly traded commercial human spaceflight company.

Virgin Galactic and the public investment firm agreed to a stock and cash deal — with SCH owning a 49 percent stake of the merged company. SCH’s founder will also invest $100 million at $10 per share, Branson's company said in a news release.

Credit: Virgin Galactic in Under Armour Suits 

The company plans to offer commercial space flights, charging customers nearly $250,000 for a 2.5 hour flight.

2. Elon Musk:

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
TSLATESLA INC.542.35+26.11+5.06%

When Elon Musk isn't in the weeds running Tesla, the eccentric CEO is also running a rocket company as the founder and CEO of SpaceX, a private space-exploration company. To date, SpaceX has launched over 100 missions and employs 6,000, as listed on its website.

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3. Jeff Bezos:

In addition to being Amazon's CEO and the richest man in the world, Bezos founded the spaceflight company Blue Origin in 2000. Last year, Blue Origin entered into a Launch Services Agreement partnership with the U.S. Air Force.

Of late, Bezos, following his divorce, has been seen globetrotting with girlfriend Lauren Sanchez, who is also a reported aviation junkie.

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AMZNAMAZON.COM INC.2,001.95+4.36+0.22%

4. Robert Bigelow:

AP Photo/John Raoux

Bigelow is the owner of both the hotel chain Budget Suites of America and the aerospace company Bigelow Aerospace. The space company designs and manufactures modules for space stations.

5. Larry Page:

(AP Photo/Ben Margot, File)

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
GOOGLALPHABET INC.1,179.99-3.20-0.27%

  GOOGLE CO-FOUNDERS PAGE AND BRIN STEP DOWN

The Google co-founder is one of the main financial backers of Planetary Resources, an asteroid mining company that intends to begin mining operations in 2020.

Page, along with Sergey Brin, stepped away from Google's day-to-day last year.

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FOX Business' Brittany De Lea contributed to this report as did Renwick Wilson.