Discover more from Securing Our Future
Securing Our Future - Jet Propulsion, Identity Management, and Drone Technology
22 June 2022 - A Weekly Publication by New North Ventures, formerly the Dual-Use Round Up
In this week’s publication, we feature our latest podcast featuring one of our investors, highlight dual-use companies that received funding, and discuss relevant articles relating to national security and information assurance.
Why New North Ventures - Securing the Future
We all have motivations. For me, it is solving problems and there is a gap between the national interest and the greater economy that must be closed.
Many of the game changing platform shifts of the last century developed because of collaboration between the public sector (government) and the private sector.
Things like the Internet came from the collaboration of government, academia, and commercial companies to build a next generation communication system. Over 50 years later, we are still unlocking value from the Internet. The space program saw us build rockets and put a human on the moon. Advances also included new navigation technology, chemical processing, biological advances, and even Velcro. When there is a collaboration, everything is possible.
The trust and collaboration between the private sector and public sector has been at a historical low. The private sector can think that the mission oriented work is beneath them or employees outright revolt. The public sector can think Not Invented Here or doesn’t know or want to reach to collaborate. The world’s stability has been based on a healthy collaboration.
I saw this first hand at a large organization at the interface of the public sector and private sector - a government contractor. Asked to help develop a corporate venture capital arm, we saw several technology areas that we were convinced could become interesting products. Those products could be built into companies that would solve government and commercial problems and create massive value. We were unable to take those things out of the building and those innovations sit on a shelf where they continue to gather dust.
Some did not want to take risks.
Innovation and entrepreneurship is a calculated risk. We need more of this risk taking, accepting success and failure, and to move on. We have become too reactionary to allow for risks to cancel forward effort and we fail to accept that innovation is non-linear. Innovation is directionality to a future that is undiscovered.
Through this process, I met my co-founder and partner at New North Ventures, Brett Davis. While his former experience involves the Navy and the Central Intelligence Agency, we found that we are both zero to one people. We love finding, exploiting, and building a path towards a new future. For me, after building technology companies in a serial time scale, I now turn myself to helping build companies in parallel. Brett has his own reasons and I am sure that he will share them here.
We hope that we can create a unity around tackling these challenging problems. For America, we have the lead in AI/ML, cyber, and communications plus countless other areas. Our leadership has allowed us to export our know-how to create unprecedented value over the last 75 years. I personally am committed to ensure our continued leadership for another 75 years.
To that end, we have created New North Ventures to invest in our leadership. We will back, fund, and support a concentrated portfolio of early stage companies. These companies will create both massive value and serve the national interest. We are excited to share our journey about building the fund, celebrating the companies we support - with both their wins and setbacks, and educating us all on supporting American innovation.
And this is where we start.
Jeremy, @NewNorthVC Co-Founder
Interview with Rick Waddell and New North Venture Co-Founder Jeremy Hitchcock
Rick holds a BS from the United States Military Academy (Class of 1982), an MA from Oxford earned as a Rhodes Scholar, and a PhD from Columbia.
After serving 12 years on active duty, Rick transitioned to the US Army Reserve at the end of the Cold War and began his business career. He worked for 17 years in Latin America, living 12 of those years in Sao Paulo, while working in the retail, energy, and mining sectors.
As a Reservist, Rick deployed multiple times to Iraq and Afghanistan, and commanded the 76th Division, which provided an All-Hazards Response Task Force for support to civil authorities. Rick also served in the Clinton Administration as a Director for European Security Affairs, and in the Trump Administration as the Deputy National Security Adviser. Most recently he served as the Assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (ACJCS), and Senior Military Adviser to the Secretary of State.
Rick is now a Venture Partner for New North Ventures, and a Senior Fellow at the National Defense University. He has authored several publications, including Wars Then and Now (Fortis, 2011).
Rick was featured on our latest live webinar titled “Ukraine and Russia: Why and What it Means”. You can listen to the edited podcast version here. We will be announcing the next webinar in the newsletter next week.
Elevator Pitch: Developer of a propulsion system designed to offer powerful unmanned and manned aircraft to improve transportation
Funding: Raised $2,743 of equity crowdfunding on June 6th, 2022 via Startengine. Previously awarded a Phase II Small Business Technology Transfer Program (STTR) contract from the United States Air Force
Key People: Founder and CEO Steve Larson
Elevator Pitch: Proven Identity Management Enrollment Solution
Funding: Raised $10 M of venture funding the previous year in a deal led by Canaccord Genuity
Elevator Pitch: Drone technology designed to protect service members and civilians with artificially intelligent systems
Funding: Raised $150 M of Series E venture funding on May 31, 2022. The company also received an Air Force contract for $60 M in February 2022 for work regarding the company’s Hivemind autonomy stack
US had previously regulated foreign investment in US companies to prevent export of critical technology, however now they are considering regulating US investments abroad
Sectors of concern include: semiconductors, large-capacity batteries, artificial intelligence, quantum computing, hypersonics, autonomous systems such as robots and undersea drones, and others
Some legislators see it as government overreach and a threat to the free market, others view it as a national security measure
Mike Brown, outgoing director of Defense Innovation Unit, calls for more collaboration with start ups
Previous innovation was slowed down by the contract process
The war in Ukraine has highlighted the need for more innovation in the national security space
The Pentagon is struggling to compete with tech companies in it’s hiring practices
Innovation has branched out away from the government, and so have some scientists and innovators
Did you like the content? Please take a moment to share with your network or forward to a friend.
Was this email forwarded to you? Don’t miss the next one, sign up now: