Virgin Galactic replaces CFO and provides new technical management previous to earnings report

SpaceShipTwo “Unity” on the runway after an abandoned space test on December 12, 2020.

Virgo Galactic

Virgin Galactic announced a change in leadership on Thursday, hours before the space tourism company reports its fourth quarter earnings after the bell.

CFO Jon Campagna is stepping down effective Monday. He will be replaced by Doug Ahrens, former CFO of semiconductor specialist Mellanox.

“Doug’s extensive experience in scaling and growing global manufacturing companies combined with his vast capital markets and M&A expertise will be incredibly valuable as we expand our manufacturing capabilities and work to monetize the business,” said CEO Michael Colglazier in a press release.

“I’d like to thank Jon on behalf of the entire Virgin Galactic team,” added Colglazier. “Jon was our CFO during our transition from a private to a public company and has helped build great relationships with the investment community.”

Virgin Galactic shares were down 5.6% in the early afternoon.

The company has added two new people to its technical leadership, announcing Swami Iyer as President of Aerospace Systems and Stephen Justice as Vice President of Engineering.

Iyer, most recently president of GKN Advanced Defense Systems, will lead Virgin Galactic’s efforts to build the company’s fleet of spacecraft and aircraft. Justice, who served as director of advanced systems development for Lockheed Martin’s Skunk Works division for 30 years, will lead the expansion of Virgin Galactic’s engineering corps.

Virgin Galactic’s personnel change will take place prior to the release of fourth quarter and 2020 results. The numbers are expected shortly after market closes. An investor conference call is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. ET.

Shareholders will seek information from Coglalzier and his team on Virgin Galactic’s work to complete the spacecraft system development and timing of the start of commercial service.

These milestones were previously forecast for the first quarter of this year, but Virgin Galactic’s flight test program was rolled back after an anomaly during a space flight attempt in December. Virgin Galactic was scheduled to attempt to repeat this test flight earlier this month, but this has been delayed for technical reviews of the spacecraft.

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