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Dr. Sean Casey, Tuesday, 2-12-13 February 13, 2013

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Dr. Sean Casey, Tuesday, 2-12-13


Guest:  Dr. Sean Casey.  Topics:  Space Entrepreneurism, Silicon Valley, space startups, Silicon Valley Space Center events, programs, & objectives.  Please direct all comments and questions regarding Space Show programs/guest(s) to the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com.  Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information.

We welcomed back Dr. Sean Casey, co-founder of the Silicon Valley Space Center business accelerator (http://svsc.org).  You can “like” them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pages/Silicon-Valley-Space-Center/139916589409748.  The SVSC can also be found on LinkedIn. While hour 2 hour 40 minute program was in two segments, this summary will be in one part as our themes and topics went back and forth in the same area throughout the discussion.  Dr. Casey started with a summary of 2012 activities and events for the Silicon Valley Space Center (SVSC).  During our discussion, Dr. Casey talked about, mentioned, and listed many space entrepreneurial startups and businesses, far to many to list or mention individually.  He also outlined coming events for the SVSC which are available to the public and will be online for those unable to attend in person.  Responding to listener questions, he cited company example after example of space startups and we even talked about Northern California, San Francisco, and Silicon Valley being the center of this effort.  Upon listeners questioning him on the subject, Sean suggested additional startup space efforts in other parts of the company.  While Silicon Valley does not have a lock on this new industrial development, as you will hear, startups and space entrepreneurism are developing in centers across the country.  We also talked about venture capitalist ROI expectations over five years coming in around 30%.  We discussed the hockey stick graph and what this means for space entrepreneurs.  Sean spent time on the SVSC website and Facebook page going through the coming 2013 events and programs.  Doug called in with a question about track records for startups and investors.  In his response, Dr. Casey talked about the various business incubators now in place to mentor and help space entrepreneurs, even non-profits.  He suggested how you might find a reputable business incubator in your own city or area though one could probably work with one of the organizations Sean mentioned, even if you are outside California.  Another issue that came up was lobbying members of congress and state representatives on space policy.  Here, we talked about California and I again shared my experiences with Sacramento and California Space Day over the last six or seven years.  Dr. Casey addressed the uphill battle with gaining more political support for all aspects of the space industry, especially in California.  Dr. Casey provided us with one of the most comprehensive space startup and entrepreneurial programs heard on The Space Show.

Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog mentioned above.  You can reach Dr. Casey through me or directly at sean.casey@siliconvalleyspacecenter.org.


Dr. Burton Lee, Monday, 9-17-12 September 17, 2012

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Dr. Burton Lee, Monday, 9-17-12


Guest:  Dr. Burton Lee.  Topics: Space entrepreneurship and venture capital investment.  You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com. Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. We welcomed Dr. Burton Lee back to the program to discuss venture capital and space entrepreneurship.  Dr. Lee made a presentation about this subject at the NewSpace Conference Boot Camp and is sharing this information with us at this time.  His Power Point presentation, “Space Entrepreneurship & Silicon Valley Venture Finance Trends in 2012,” has been uploaded to The Space Show blog.  During our 90 minute discussion without a break, Dr. Lee took us through the Power Point slides as we discussed important issues, trends, and suggestions pertaining to space entrepreneurship and getting it financed in the VC community.  I suggest you go through the slides with us during our discussion.  Some important take aways to consider include the need to stress business characteristics, not space related characteristics.  In fact, he advised against being a space advocate in pitches, presentations, and business meetings. Also, Dr. Lee suggested getting real business experience with a non-space organization or start-up as it is the real business experience that matters, not space science, space engineering, or anything like that.  He advised to really do your homework as to your markets, business planning, financing, etc.  Later, he talked about “hot” books in the Valley which are a must read for the space entrepreneur.  These are detailed in some of his later slides. Both Dr. Lee and I suggest you read these books.  We talked about new funding methods including Kickstarter and the possibility of equity crowd source funding down the road.  We also went over important trends that adversely impact the potential opportunities for the space ventures.  For example, software is far better and more lucrative than hardware.  The apps and related business are Valley favorites.  We spent lots of time discussing and understanding these trends and seeing where space could possibly fit in but another take away was that space projects face fierce overall competition for funding from ventures with lower risk, larger markets, rapid exit strategies, and the potential for virality.  This is an important discussion and I hope all of you listening to it will do so with an open mind. Dr. Lee has the experience, the position, and the knowledge on these subjects and what he had to say is something we have to know, even if we are simply space advocates and enthusiasts and not an actual space entrepreneur.  For those of us that are space entrepreneurs, Dr. Lee’s discussion is crucial to success – IMHO!
Please post your comments/questions on The Space Show blog to benefit us all.  If you want to email Dr. Lee, note that his email address is provided on the title page of his Power Point.  If you do email him with a question, please copy me as I would like to continue learning and sharing in the knowledge Dr. Lee offers to us all.  Thank you.

Burton Lee – The Space Show – Sept 17 2012 – Final