Christopher Moran, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin’s (NYSE: LMT) venture capital arm, has said that both defense sector viability and commercial traction are primary factors in venture capitalists’ investment strategy.
Moran said in a Government Matters interview aired Tuesday that there has been a major shift in the venture capital space driven by the Department of Defense’s interest in the rapid development of commercial technology.
He noted that the DoD has “done a tremendous amount” of work providing entry points and opportunities for companies that are new to working with the government.
Peter Newell, CEO of Calif.-based professional services firm BMNT, said in the same interview session that while opportunities like the U.S. Air Force’ AFWERX innovation segment, Small Business Innovation Research program and the Office of Naval Research’s initiatives have helped reduce barriers for companies, the government also needs to incorporate entrepreneurial leaders that understand how the private sector operates.
He said this will make the government a better commercial partner while improving communication and establishing better opportunity pathways for nontraditional firms.
According to Moran, success in the venture capital market entails “understanding how to work with these companies in their formative phases” as they learn how to operate within the venture community.