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Boeing drops $20M into Virgin Galactic to speed commercial spaceflight

The two companies aim to advance space tourism.

Virgin Galactic announces major milestone in manufacture of next spaceship
Boeing pours more capital into what may be the first commercial spaceflight company to be publicly listed. 
Virgin Galactic

Aerospace giant Boeing has invested $20 million in space tourism company Virgin Galactic as the two partners look to advance commercial human spaceflight. The move was announced in a Monday press release and follows news from July that Virgin Galactic will be publicly listed on the New York Stock Exchange and begin commercial test launches by year's end.

Boeing's investment, completed through venture arm HorizonX, adds to Virgin Galactic's already impressive war chest of nearly $1 billion. 

"The unique expertise of our companies stretches from points all around the world to the deepest reaches of space. Together we will change how people travel on Earth, and among the stars, for generations to come," Leanne Caret, Boeing's CEO of Defense, Space & Security, said in the release. 

Virgin Galactic is expected to be the first publicly traded spaceflight company. Competing commercial spaceflight companies -- Elon Musk's SpaceX and Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin -- are both privately held. 

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