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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — As the flow of private investment into entrepreneurial space companies grows, some investors say they are willing to accept long waits for a return on their investment in companies that have the potential to change entire industries.

Scott Nolan, a partner in San Francisco-based venture capital firm Founders Fund, said during a space finance panel at the 31st Space Symposium here April 15 that he received a skeptical reaction when the firm invested in SpaceX several years ago, given the company has no plans to perform an initial public offering of stock or otherwise allow investors to recoup their investment.

“When we first invested in SpaceX, people thought it was a crazy investment,” he recalled. “But, at a high level, we don’t focus too much on how quickly we will get returns.”

Nolan said his …

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