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Michael Jones, Executive Chairman & Group CEO
Equatorial Launch Australia

Mr Jones has over 30 years’ senior management experience as a CEO, Company Director, Investment Banker, Corporate Advisor, Test Pilot, Sports Administrator and Business mentor/advisor.

Following a distinguished military career as an Experimental Test Pilot, Mr Jones held several senior positions as CEO of the Aerospace Group, Raytheon Australia and Smart Communication Group. Mr Jones also completed several senior advisory and technical appointments with Boeing, Airbus, IPTN/CASA and Alenia Aeronautica.
An Olympian as Director of Sailing at the Beijing Olympics, past Chairman of the Americas’ Cup Challenger Committee and CEO of Brumbies professional rugby team Mr Jones continues to have a passion for, and parallel career in elite sports management.

Mr Jones was the founder and inaugural CEO and Chairman of ASX listed airline Regional Express (ASX: REX). Mr Jones has also sat on numerous public, private and not for profit Boards.

Michael also co-founded and was Managing Partner of investment banking company Canterbury Hill Advisory for 14 years, completing over $2 billion in transactions and has filled temporary CEO or Principal Advisor to the Boards of companies in the Airline, Agricultural, Marine, Manufacturing, Logistics, Professional Sport, Resources, Property, Medical Services, Software and Financial Services industries.

Before joining ELA in 2021, Mr Jones filled CEO and Chief Strategy Officer roles with large logistics business AWH and Virgin Australian Airline respectively.
Mr Jones has a Bachelor of Arts (Economics) from the University of NSW, a Master of Applied Science (eqv) from Cranfield University and a Grad Dip of Applied Finance (Investment Banking) from the Securities Institute of Australia.

Michael Jones joined ELA in 2021 and since that time has: restructured the company, completed Series A and B capital raises, steered the development of the Arnhem Space Centre and the issue of the first Launch Facilities Licence and Launch Permit for Australia’s first ever commercial Space launch and NASA’s first ever launch from a commercial space Port.

ELA owns and operates the Arnhem Space Centre (ASC) at 12 degrees south of the equator and the world most advanced multi-user commercial spaceport, having achieved three NASA space launches in 15 days in 2022. From 2024 ELA will increase orbital launch cadence to a peak tempo of over 50 launch/year.
ELA has agreements with ‘new space’ launch providers from USA, Europe and Asia and expects to be soon booked out for the next five years.

Mr Jones is a highly distinguished graduate of the Royal Military College Duntroon and the Empire Test Pilots’ School UK. He is a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society, a Member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots and a member of Financial Services Institute of Australasia.

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