Jeff Bezos: Amazon boss and brother to travel into space for ‘adventure’ in Blue Origin flight
Amazon boss Jeff Bezos has said he will travel into space next month on the first human flight launched by his own space company, Blue Origin.
The US business tycoon’s brother will join him on the inaugural crewed flight, along with the winner of an auction who will be given a seat.
Mr Bezos, who is one of the world’s richest men, said in an Instagram post that the rocket flight was something he had wanted to do “all my life”.
In the video, he said: "What a remarkable opportunity to see the Earth from space… it changes you.
"I want to go on this flight because it's a thing. It's an adventure - it's a big deal for me."
Bezos has ‘dreamed’ of space travel since he was a child
Mr Bezos added: "Ever since I was five years old, I've dreamed of traveling to space. On July 20, I will take that journey with my brother."
The Amazon founder’s brother Mark also called it a “remarkable opportunity” in the post.
Mr Bezos has a net worth of $186.2bn (£131.5bn), according to Forbes magazine.
It comes as Andy Jassy is set to become the chief executive of Amazon next month, while Mr Bezos will take the role of executive chair at the company he founded 30 years ago in his garage.
The first round of the auction for the spare seat on the New Shepard - the name of the rocket - closed last month, Blue Origin said, attracting more than 5,200 bidders from 136 countries.
While the highest bid from the round wasn’t disclosed, the current highest bid in the ongoing second round stands at $2.8m (£1.98m), according to the company’s website.
Bidding will conclude on 12 June with a live online auction.
The New Shepard booster, which can land vertically on the ground after it returns to Earth, is named after Alan Shepard, who was the first US citizen to travel into space.
The rocket’s passengers will be launched more than 100km (62 miles) above the planet’s surface on the target date of 20 July, before the capsule comes back to earth under parachutes, according to Blue Origin’s website.