The aerospace company SpaceX, which works for NASA, will lay off 10% of its 6,000 or so employees, a source close to the file said on Friday.
"To continue to supply our customers and successfully develop our interplanetary gears as well as the Internet space, the company SpaceX must degrease", writes SpaceX in a statement sent to Agence France-Presse.
"These efforts, even undertaken separately, have ruined other organizations. That means we have to separate ourselves from some of our team members, talented and hardworking "continues the statement. "We are grateful for all they have accomplished and their commitment to SpaceX's mission. This initiative is only due to the extraordinary challenges that await us "says the company, headquartered in Hawthorne, a suburb of Los Angeles.
"A very difficult decision"
According to an email from SpaceX president, Gwynne Shotwell, sent to employees and obtained by the Los Angeles Times, this downsizing "Is a very difficult but necessary decision".
The firm, founded by the whimsical billionaire Elon Musk, supplies including the International Space Station on behalf of NASA and must allow him to send astronauts back into space. Since the shutdown of the space shuttle in 2011, the US agency, like all the others, in fact relies entirely Russian Soyuz rockets for its manned flights.
It also plans to send some 12,000 telecommunications satellites in the coming decade to develop cheap internet links.
SpaceX is developing a new large rocket, "Starship", which will eventually become SpaceX's only launcher and one day to bring astronauts around the Moon or even Mars, according to Elon Musk's plans. Today, the company uses and reuses its Falcon 9 rockets.