Rocket Lab’s new, larger and crew-capable neutron rocket, scheduled for first launch in 2024. Video / Rocket Lab

Rocket Lab is performing an internal audit to assess its eligibility for the government’s wage subsidy program after financial results showed a profit of $ 1.1 million.

The Kiwi-American space company has claimed nearly $ 2.85 million in the grant for its hundreds of New Zealand-based workers as it has experienced the uncertainty of Covid-19 lockdowns and border restrictions on it. last year.

“Unable to launch, and with our manufacturing operations suspended, our ability to generate revenue has been affected in 2020,” a Rocket Lab spokesperson told the Herald in a statement.

“We determined at the time that this loss of earnings qualified the company for the wage subsidy and this enabled Rocket Lab to keep over 400 people employed in New Zealand during a time of economic uncertainty.”

However, with the pandemic now more stable, the company has ordered an audit to “definitively assess eligibility” for the wage subsidy against the full financial results, the spokesperson said.

“Although the conditions for the grant were met due to loss of income, Rocket Lab New Zealand’s status as a captive service provider to its US parent company introduced accounting complexities and further assessment is required. .

“In the interest of transparency and prudent reporting, this potential ineligibility has been described in recent financial statements.”

Rocket Lab’s financial statements, released last week, read: “Following receipt of the grant, the Company has noted that the conditions for the grant are unlikely to have been met.”

According to financial records, Rocket Lab made a profit of $ 1.1 million for the year ended Dec. 31.

“If the final decision finds that the conditions for the wage subsidy have not been met, Rocket Lab will reimburse the subsidy,” the spokesperson said.

Rocket Lab claimed $ 2,845,440 for 408 employees, according to Department of Social Development records.

The government’s wage subsidy program, which has been in place in one form or another since March of last year, has paid out $ 14 billion to help businesses survive declining revenues during the Covid-19 pandemic .

Over 1.8 million jobs are supported by the High Confidence program.

Some large companies have already repaid its grant, including $ 68 million for The Warehouse Group and $ 14.2 million for Ryman Healthcare.

Napier Port, Briscoe Group and the law firms Bell Gully, MinterEllisonRuddWatts and Simpson Grierson are others to return the emergency funds.

While Rocket Lab is a US-based company, most of its roughly 500 employees are based in New Zealand and launch its rockets carrying small satellites from the Mahia Peninsula on the east coast.

Invercargill entrepreneur Peter Beck founded the Kiwi-American company in 2006 and, as managing director, is expected to see its $ 4.1 billion ($ 6 billion) Nasdaq listing by the next end of this month.

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This notice was published: 2021-06-13 03:10:00


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