Embedded Ventures announces Space Force CRADA

Embedded Ventures, a new Malibu, CA-based venture capital firm investing in dual-use space startups beyond launch, announced on October 13 an unprecedented multi-year agreement with United States Space Force (USSF)’s SpaceWERX office. SpaceWERX is expanding the space industrial base by forming collaborative research agreements between the military’s operational experts and the top innovators in industry and academia, leveraging commercial investment, and rapidly pursuing new space technologies, while setting ambitious goals since its creation.

The arrangement, established via a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) through the Air Force Research Lab’s Technology Transfer Office in New Mexico, enables the two entities to collaborate on research and development opportunities promoting U.S. space industry growth to prepare for the future of an expanded space economy and for the defense of U.S. interests. This agreement marks the first time in history that the USSF has signed a CRADA with a VC firm.

“As the skunkworks of venture capital firms, we knew we wanted to do things differently from the start. We are honored to partake in the first formal VC partnership with USSF,” said Jenna Bryant, co-founder, CEO and general partner of Embedded Ventures. “We’ve been in communication for months, but with this CRADA now in place, we’re thrilled to formally work together to drive success at both organizations. This agreement also impacts me on a personal level, as my brother is a Marine Corps V-22 Pilot, and I want to see our soldiers have access to the best private innovation we can find.”

“Jenna first envisioned the potential for this type of collaboration when she brought senior Department of Defense leaders and I together a few years ago, even before Embedded Ventures existed,” said Jordan Noone, co-founder, CTO, and general partner of Embedded Ventures. “We’re thrilled to be the first VC firm to have such an agreement with USSF, guiding progress for years to come.”

The parties will collaboratively investigate the potential benefits of leveraging VC investment practices to accelerate the pace of change and innovation. They will also examine the USSF industry business relationships to define future methods for investment into the VC ecosystem. Embedded Ventures and USSF will be meeting regularly to discuss progress related to tangible milestones set forth.

There were additional key personnel who helped to orchestrate this alliance, including Mandy Vaughn, operating partner at Embedded Ventures, Col. Nathan Diller, director of AFWERX, Col. Eric Felt, director of AFRL’s Space Vehicles Directorate, Gabe Mounce, deputy director at SpaceWERX, and Melissa Ortiz, agreements specialist for AFRL’s Tech Transfer Office in New Mexico.

“SpaceWERX is excited to formalize this agreement with Embedded Ventures, creating a highly collaborative and efficient workflow between our two groups, while keeping us all accountable,” said Lt. Col. Walter “Rock” McMillan, director of SpaceWERX. “From the moment I met Jenna, Jordan and Mandy, I knew they were the right team to launch this unique cooperative research and development agreement. They possess the talent, insight and all the necessary ingredients to be leading the next generation of space investment.”

“Space is inherently different in that it leverages commercial industry as an integral part of every space capability,” said Mandy Vaughn, operating partner at Embedded Ventures. “This relationship is a tangible first step for us. I think that it shows that a key element of their own success is to tap into the emerging companies and sectors that firms, like Embedded Ventures, were established to foster.”

Source: Embedded Ventures

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