Broadcast 3477 Jose Ocasio-Christian & Micah Walter-Range

The Space Foundation Conference

17 Mar 2020 Jose Ocasio-Christian, Micah Walter-Range
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Guests:  Jose Ocasio-Christian; Micah Walter-Range;  Topics: Space economic develop during COVID-19 outbreak, commercial space concerns, capital acquisition, recovery and more.

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We welcomed back both Jose Ocasio-Christian and Micah Walter-Range to discuss Caelus Partners and their community approach for the very valuable and important space industry which our guests cited as a national security industry.  Note that I posted the URLs for the two articles penned by our guests in the comments section for our blog for this show.  Be sure to read each paper as they concisely summarize our 90 minute discussion. Much of our discussion focused on the space industry and the COVID-19 virus.  I believe our discussion was both timely and important.

We started our two segment 90 minute discussion with an introduction to Caelus Partners for those not familiar with Caelus, Jose or Micah.  Don't miss the introduction because in addition, it provided a good historical summary of NewSpace, commercial space and the international space industry a few years prior to and up to the Covid-19 outbreak.  This segment was chocked full of important information including a few key points on space markets actually getting smaller, and on an industry that was for the most part not economically sustainable.  While there was VC support and investment, it was not widespread or broad but narrowly focused.  Other key things to note included the industry employment rate which was said to be low plus an abundance of importance placed on the conference model for business, investment and industry deal making. Note how most of that changed with the coming of COVID -19.  Do not miss what our guests said on this subject.  Not only did their comments lead us into the balance of the program but to the understanding behind the programs and efforts announced later in the program by Jose and Micah tonight later and in their papers I added to the comment section for this program.  

Our guests provided examples to support what they were saying then Micah relayed to us the current experience of the Satellite 2020 conference.  Satellite 2020 attempted to go forward with their conference but had to terminate it while in sessions due to the virus.  Don't miss this story or the significance of this event.  Before the break, more was said about the space industry reliance on the conference format, questioning the importance of the format and possible doing things a bit differently moving forward once the virus event has subsided.

We started off the second segment with a call from Ft. Worth John.  John was critical of the wide spread panic in major parts of the country. He claimed lots of this was caused by a hyper panic oriented media.  Jose and Micah had quite the discussion for a good part of the second segment on this subject and related subjects. John also offered up his analysis, similar to what he did on an OL show a few weeks ago.  The comparison of Italy with the US came up for discussion among the three of them.  At one point I entered the discussion, challenging the techno and chart talk due to the absence of real human issues with lots of people who are having lots of problems right now coping with the COVID-19 issues.  It did not seem right to me to ignore the human element in favor of only data and analysis.  Jose picked up on my comments and amplified much of what I said and was attempting to say.

Marshall was the next caller.  He wanted to refer back to comments made in the first segment by our guests regrading space start-up businesses.  He asked what the average age might be for the space startup workers given his understanding the virus was a lot less lethal for young people than older folks.  Marshal, Micah, and Jose discussed this topic for several minutes.  Jose said to many in the industry, this was a Black Swan event.  The subject of math logic came up in their analysis and discussion. 

Our guests continued to talk about new ways of doing things which was a discussion started at the end of the first segment.  Space conferences were an example. They suggested new models might develop should the conferences remain important for the space industry. There were even suggestions for virtual conferences.  The launch industry was also brought up as example, questioning how the future might change for this industry as a result of the virus.  Listen to what was said regarding both the national security side of the space industry and the commercial side.  I asked our guests if they thought we would return to business as usual post the virus problems and if lessons learned would be applied for changes.  Mica responded to my question, talking about not living in fear and being prepared.  Jose suggested possible regional changes.  Don't mis this part of the discussion.  In addition, post your thoughts on the blog regarding what you have been hearing during this program.  We want to hear from you on these important subjects. 

As we were nearing the end of the program, our guests stressed community involvement as a path to success.  They said this included the federal along with state and local governments in variations of public private partnerships. Once again, don't miss how our guests described community success solutions.  Before ending, I asked both our guests for their thoughts on a timeline for how long we might be dealing with COVID-19.  Our guests talked about different models from China and elsewhere including a six month model two to four month model. 

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog for this show.  You can reach our guests through me or their website, www.caeluspartners.com

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Caelus updates and COVID19 and the space industry

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