If you had an idea that you really believed in, how much money would you invest in it? If you ask Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, the answer is $1 billion. Per year.
Bezos plans to sell $1 billion worth of his personal Amazon stock every year to help fund Blue Origin. At the annual Space Symposium in Colorado Springs, Bezos announced his plan to help boost Blue Origin's rockets as high as their goals currently are. He has moved up to the second spot on the world's wealthiest list, so he certainly has the savings to accomplish this. With a net worth close to $80 billion, Bezos can continue his aggressive funding for decades to come.
What will this new cash injection do for Blue Origin? It will certainly help the emerging spaceflight company stay competitive with SpaceX. The two most prominent private aerospace companies are working to develop a commercial space transportation and tourism industry. Blue Origin has plans to start offering 11 minute space rides for wealthy tourists coming up next year. With this business model, Blue Origin can become a financially profitable company off of ticket sales alone.
SpaceX on the other hand has been heavily focusing on commercial launches of satellites and delivering gear to the ISS. Elon Musk has also announced plans for sending travelers around the moon and to Mars in the coming years.
Bezos' personal investment as well as funding from satellite customers will help bring down the cost of space travel. Bezos said he wants to make space travel as common as airline flights by reusing rockets to bring down the cost by 99 percent. He's has made it clear though that he's in no rush to get the program off the ground. His personal funding is a sure sign that things will start to advance much quicker in the future however.