Glavkosmos, which already has a share in GK Launch Services, the marketing arm for Soyuz rockets, is to have another body under its umbrella. By order of Roscosmos, Glavkosmos will take control of International Launch Services (ILS), marketer of the Proton rocket produced by Khrunichev.
ILS was recently dealt a blow by Roscosmos when it decided to concentrate its resources on the Angara A5 (the Angara A3 has been similarly shelved) rather than produce a cheaper, reduced stage, version of the venerable expendable Proton launch vehicle. Dubbed the Proton Medium, ILS had hoped to compete with SpaceX’s much cheaper part-reusable Falcon 9 series. ILS still plans to cut the price of its standard three-stage-plus Briz M upper stage Proton M launch vehicle – a rocket that has been dogged by quality control issues – to make it competitive.