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Earlier this month, the National Space Society and The Center for Space Commerce and Finance announced that this year’s second regional NewSpace Business Plan Competition will be held in conjunction with the 2017 International Space Development Conference (ISDC) on May 26 in St. Louis. Competitors will present their business plan in front of a panel of investors and the ISDC audience, for a chance to win a cash prize and guaranteed entry into the national NewSpace Business Plan Competition in November. Applications are due May 12.
“We’re looking for startup companies, at any stage, that have a technology or product that will significantly advance the new space movement,” said Joel Vinas, Executive Director of the Center for Space Commerce and Finance, the organization that manages the NewSpace Business Plan Competition. “This could be anything from launch and propulsion companies, to small satellite manufacturers, or companies that provide products or services to any sector of the emerging commercial space economy.”
Companies with space-scalable technologies are highly encouraged to apply. This includes technologies that are primarily developed to solve problems here on Earth for commercial benefit and profit, but are also scalable to solve key long-range space problems when the demand ultimately exists.
“The wide range of companies and technologies that we’re seeing develop in this industry is indicative of its rapid growth,” said Steve Jorgensen, founder of Space Finance Group and chair of the space business track at this year’s ISDC. “We’re thrilled to be a part of the competition that helps catalyze this industry’s growth by promoting, educating, and connecting the next generation of explorers.”
The winner of the St.Louis regional event will receive a $2,500 cash prize, courtesy of the Heinlein Prize Trust. The winner will also be guaranteed the opportunity to compete at the national NewSpace Business Plan Competition, to be held at the New Worlds Conference in Austin, TX on November 10-11, 2017.
“As an angel investor myself, I’m excited to see a competition focused on space, that is intended to simulate the real world process of entrepreneurs soliciting funding from early stage investors and venture capital firms,” said Alice Hoffman, president of the National Space Society. “I can’t wait to see what exciting companies will present this year!”
All interested space startup companies are encouraged to apply on the NewSpace Business Plan Competition website. Interested investors, media, students, and anyone who would like to be in the audience, are encouraged to sign up to attend the International Space Development Conference.