Firefly Aerospace (“Firefly” or the “Company”), an emerging leader in economical launch vehicles, spacecraft, and in-space services, announced today that CEO and co-founder Tom Markusic will transition from CEO to full-time board member and Chief Technical Advisor to Firefly effective tomorrow June 16, and remains a significant minority investor in the Company. Peter Schumacher, Partner at AE Industrial Partners (“AEI”), will take over CEO responsibilities in the interim, as a search for a successor is underway.

“I’m proud of the company I co-founded and built, and confident that Firefly is well positioned to seize upon the tremendous opportunities and investment in the space industry today,” said Mr. Markusic. “The future for Firefly is bright, and the time is right for a new leader with the necessary skills to lead the company into its next stage of growth and development.”

In March, Firefly received a $75 million Series B funding round led by AEI, a U.S-based private equity firm specializing in aerospace, defense and government services, space, power and utility services, and specialty industrial markets. The financing is providing capital for Firefly’s growth, including future Alpha flights, the Blue Ghost Lunar Lander Program, and the development of additional launch and in-space solutions. AEI also completed its acquisition of a majority stake in the Company in March.

“Tom has worked tirelessly over the last eight years to start and build Firefly into the innovative company it is today, and we thank him for his vision and leadership,” said Kirk Konert, Partner at AEI. “With new ownership and funding, Firefly has been reinvigorated. The Company is entering a new phase of growth, highlighted by the upcoming second launch of Alpha, Firefly’s flagship launch vehicle, this summer. We are confident that we will soon find the right person to build upon this momentum and collaborate with the talented Firefly team to help the Company continue its success.”

Firefly recently confirmed the expected second launch of Alpha this summer with both stages and the payload currently on site at Vandenberg, and recently completed the Integration Readiness Review (IRR) with NASA on the Blue Ghost Lunar Lander Program, paving the way for assembly of the flight vehicle. The company has also begun development of its Beta medium launch vehicle with a target introduction in 2024.

About Firefly Aerospace

Headquartered in Cedar Park, TX, Firefly Aerospace is an end-to-end space transportation company developing a family of launch, in-space vehicles, and services to provide industry-leading affordability, convenience, and reliability. Firefly’s launch vehicles utilize common technologies, internal manufacturing infrastructure, and dedicated launch capabilities, providing LEO launch solutions for up to ten metric tons of payload at the lowest cost per kg in the small- and medium-launch class. Combined with Firefly’s in-space vehicles, such as the Space Utility Vehicle (SUV) and Blue Ghost Lunar Lander, Firefly provides the space industry with a single source for missions from LEO to the surface of the Moon or beyond. For more information please see


For Firefly:

Kim Jennett


For AE Industrial:

Jennifer Hurson