Tom Markusic Out as Firefly CEO 3 Months After AEI Takes Majority Stake in Rocket Company

Tom Markusic and Lauren Lyons in front of Firefly Alpha rocket on the pad at Vandenberg Space Force Base. (Credit: Firefly Aerospace)

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

Firefly Aerospace co-founder Tom Markusic is out as CEO, a move that comes three months after AE Industrial Partners (AEI) led a $75 million Series B funding round and completed its acquisition of a majority stake in the rocket company.

Firefly announced this week that Markusic transitioned to the role of full-time board member and chief technical advisor on Thursday, June 16. He remains “a significant minority investor” in the company, which is preparing for the second flight test of its Alpha small-satellite booster.


Ukraine’s Pivdenmash Sends Beta Launch Vehicle First Stage Model to Firefly Aerospace

Credit; State Space Agency of Ukraine

DNIPRO, Ukraine (State Space Agency of Ukraine PR) — The State Enterprise Production Association Southern Machine-Building Plant OHM Makarov (Pivdenmash, formerly PA Yuzhmash) sent a dimensional docking model of the first stage of the Beta medium-range launch vehicle to the customer, Firefly Aerospace.

The model was made at PIVDENMASH under a contract with Firefly Aerospace and in accordance with its design documentation.

The product will simulate the docking of two to four engine units on liquid fuel components.

The model was transported to the Black Sea port, from where the cargo route travel to the Port of Houston in Texas. 

Firefly Aerospace to Automate Composite Rocket Production with Ingersoll Machine Tools

CEDAR PARK, Texas  (Firefly Aerospace PR) — Firefly Aerospace, Inc., a leading provider of economical and dependable launch vehicles, spacecraft, and in-space services, today announced a substantial commitment to increase its manufacturing capacity by transitioning large parts manufacturing to Automated Fiber Placement (AFP) Mongoose Hybrid systems from Ingersoll Machine Tools beginning next year. Once fully operational, Firefly’s AFP capabilities will enable it to produce its all-composite Alpha rocket airframe in as little as fourteen days.