Jeff Bezos To Fly To Space A Month After Stepping Down As Amazon CEO
Amazon’s billionaire founder Jeff Bezos said on Monday he and his brother Mark will fly on the first crewed space flight from his rocket company Blue Origin next month.
In an Instagram post, Bezos said:
Ever since I was five years old, I’ve dreamed of traveling to space. On July 20th, I will take that journey with my brother.
Bezos, who is due to step down as Amazon’s chief on July 5, will join the winner of an auction for a seat on the first space flight from Blue Origin.
Bezos, fellow billionaires Elon Musk and Richard Branson have been investing billions of dollars on their rocket startups, but Bezos will be the first of the three to actually travel into space on a rocket developed by his own company.
The Blue Origin spacecraft, which is set to carry Bezos and others, has undergone 15 test flights, none of which had any passengers onboard.
Blue Origin closed the first round of the auction last month and said it had received more than 5,200 bidders from 136 countries, without disclosing the highest bid from the round.
New Shepard is on track to be the first commercial space flight to take a civilian beyond the Kármán line, the internationally recognised edge of space, more than 60 miles above the earth. Almost 6,000 people have bid the price of a seat on New Shepard up to $2.8m, Blue Origin said on Monday.
“To see the earth from space changes you, it changes your relationship with this planet, with humanity. It’s one Earth,” Bezos said in Monday’s Instagram video. Mark Bezos said he was “awestruck” by the “unexpected” invitation, calling it a “remarkable opportunity”.
Mark Bezos is the founder of HighPost Capital, a New York-based private equity firm that is partially owned by the Bezos family.
He also works with Robin Hood, a New York anti-poverty charity, and as a volunteer firefighter in Scarsdale, an affluent suburb in Westchester County.