Space Pitch Day 1 Closing Ceremony

Air Force Space Pitch Day closing ceremony. The two-day event hosted by the U.S. Air Force to demonstrate the Air Force’s willingness and ability to work with non-traditional startups. The “Day 1 Closing Ceremony” announced a few (12) companies awarded a contract at the time, a total of 16 companies were awarded by the end of day.

Featuring on-stage:
Lt. Gen. John F. Thompson
Commander, Space and Missile Systems Center

Dr. Will Roper
Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics

Walter Talens
Public Affairs, SMC

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Now we’ve come to the close of the first day, the first Space Pitch Day, and I’d like to bring up Lieutenant General Thompson and Dr. Roper again. So please give me a round of applause for Dr. Roper and Lieutenant General Thompson.

All right, well, I don’t know exactly how to react. The room is not nearly as occupied as it was this morning or in the opening ceremonies, or during the Elon Musk Q and A, the fireless Fireside Chat. But maybe that just means people are out there networking or visiting the Expo. They’re getting to know each other, they’re doing deals, right? So, just a couple of things. So, number one, we had Secretary of the Air Force, Barbara Barrett, here today. We had Elon Musk here today. We had, in addition to the private pitches going on downstairs in the restricted area, we had public pitches. We had panel interviews. We had the Expo going with 64 different exhibitors along with our Space Warfighters from the 14th Air Force and their capability delivery folks. Just an amazing event all along so far, and we’re not even halfway there, right? So tomorrow we’ve got, if you’re here for the opening ceremonies tomorrow, the keynote is Brigadier General Wolfe Davidson, who’s going to bring to you the perspective of the end user of our nation’s most critical space capabilities and that’s something that you don’t want to miss if you want to know how your customer or potential customer feels about the capabilities that he needs in terms of deterring a war in space and in protecting the global commons of space. So, we’re really really looking forward to that. Along with the continuation of the Expo, and the public pitches and the panel sessions tomorrow, it should be a fantastic day. A lot of people in this room are probably planning on going to the social event up on the, whatever it is, the 46th or the 48th floor, for the Cityscape Lounge networking event and that’s awesome. There are some people in this room though that have to go back and listen to more private pitches, but that’s okay, because those folks that have listened to those private pitches today have seen really really epic speed, if you remember my remarks from this morning, epic speed focused Phase II SBIRs efforts that are some hardware focused, some software focused, some data analytics focused. It’s really cool what’s going on and without further ado, what I’d like to do is turn the floor over to the Air Force’s Service Acquisition Executive, Dr. Will Roper, and have him tell us who were the big winners on Day One. Boss, over to you.

All right, J.T. So, if this was an episode of Oprah, we would tell you to look under your chairs right now. (audience laughs) But it’s not. Welcome to the government. (audience laughs) Thank you for being the people here at the end. Now we know there’s a lot of networking going on but just thanks for being part of something new. So I’m a big optimist, not because I just think the future’s gonna be good just because, but really because of the talent that we have, the great innovators that we have in this country, and the fact that government can be changed around a mission that matters. And keeping a leading edge in space is a mission that matters. It’s one we all share. So thanks for being here. Awesome pitches today, awesome technology, exactly what we wanted to see. And we’re not done. So I hope that you had a good day, that you’ll be back tomorrow, because we’ve got more pitches to receive, we’ve got more contracts to potentially grant, but it’s the end of the day, so we don’t want to hear any more words, we just want to hear who won, and so without further ado, (phone rings) or phone calls, (audience laughs) maybe that’s the Pentagon calling, telling us to go back to the old process of the four and the 5000 series. (audience jeers) Yeah, talk about enemies you have to overcome. All right, now I’ve been told that we’re gonna have a slide, which is not here, so let’s pretend that we don’t see this. Can we remove this slide? Because it just doesn’t feel right. Can we pop it off? All right. So let’s just pretend that that was a trial run. All of this is discovery. If you could please lend your feet or your hands or whatever to make a drum roll type effect, and without further ado, the winners are slide. (audience applauds) So I won’t read all the companies. They’re here. But this represents $9 million of contracts today and a chance at the $3 million or $1.5 million plus up tomorrow. We’ve got very compelling pitches on what these companies can do with extra funds. So we’ve got eight awards potentially for the three million, we’ve got seven for the 1.5. We’re going to hear the rest of the pitches today and tomorrow and then come back at the end of the day to tell you who goes home with a big award and a chance to take their product to the next level for the U.S. Air Force. So, in my view, home run today. Thank you for letting us be out of the Pentagon with real innovators doing real work. And before J.T. closes us out by saying goodbye, I just want to say that for today, thank you, and until tomorrow, “Live long and prosper.”

Thanks, everybody. Your Air Force leadership team really looks forward to seeing you all at the Cityscape Lounge later this evening and then back here again tomorrow for opening ceremonies in the morning. Have a great evening. Goodnight.

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