Innovation Tech Scouting

"We were absolutely amazed; the benefits have been fantastic. We ended up actively pursuing relationships with seven companies. That's a phenomenal win for us…and really pays tribute to the veracity of the American Security Challenge."

Raytheon- 2010 ASC Award Partner

Overview

ASC fills the underserved and increasing demand for competent, efficient, and rapid identification and screening (tech scouting) of innovative cyber, C4ISR, physical and energy technologies. ASC is an effective front-end scout helping scour the technology landscape to identify and then evaluate potential solutions, or provide comparative competition of a specific technology vendor under consideration. This pro-active scouting and vetting offers its customers confidence that they have uncovered the most viable solution to various requirements (or in some cases, provide the insight that innovators have not yet provided a deployable cost effective solution as desired by the customer).

ASC finds innovative technology in its national and international network including venture capitalists, angel investors, university and federal labs, academia, entrepreneurs, service providers (mentors, attorneys, accountants, consultants, recruiters, i-bankers, etc) corporations, technology and scientific associations, incubators, technology transfer offices and other technology hotspots where Client requirements may not reach.

ASC's database of innovative technology is supplemented by the outreach of its Licensees who harvest innovation from their own network of professionals and technology communities.

Methodology

Over 100 ASC Reviewers use a proprietary scoring methodology that generates an effective crowdsourced evaluation. Reviewer teams are a cross section of expertise that provides business, technical, military, civilian, industry, customer, financial and entrepreneur perspectives for a well-rounded review rather a typical groupthink scoring that occurs from just one or two viewpoints. Scoring examines the technology's uniqueness, mission criticality, value to the customer, scalability, competitive insulation as well as company stability and management.

Search and screening results are kept in a proprietary database, which is constantly updated as innovators launch new products, land blue chip customers, obtain outside capital or sell their business. This frequently refreshed database represents unique and innovative solutions of which most large public or private buyers of security technology are not aware.

ASC works in conjunction with the non-profit National Security Initiative, a marketing, research and event management firm in the defense sector as well as the National Security Operations Corporation who provides the tech scouting and vetting expertise.

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How does it benefit the Innovators and Customers

ASC is the intersection of supply (innovative emerging technology companies), and demand (the eventual customer/user) with support from the enablers who provide value to the emerging companies (service providers, investors, advisors, channel partners, etc).

Tech Seller (Innovator)

Collect market feedback
Determine actual interest with market feedback

Qualified opportunities
Customers have current need with approved budget and contract vehicle

Increase revenue
Expand sales pipeline and participate in sales opportunities with new prospects

Investor exposure
Qualified investors are seeking companies with customer traction. Pilots generate revenue as well as increase investor interest

Increase network
The ASC community is thought leaders in the security market including serial entrepreneurs, early stage investors, technical experts, sales channels, distribution partners, licensing candidates and merger or acquisition options

Tech Buyer (Customer)

Solve problems faster
ASC can broadcast requirements to a large community quickly

Extend reach
Requirements gain exposure in technology communities not previously reached

Choices screened
ASC screens through and provides feedback and short list of most viable qualified options

More confident decisions
Comfort in knowledge that extensive scouting produced broad base of alternatives which were screened against requirements

Broader alternatives
Buyers enjoy a greater number of choices as well as alternatives from different sectors (ie a gaming tech applied to simulations/training or a social networking algorithm applied to intelligent pattern recognition, etc)

The innovative companies (supply) represent not just startups but growing and more mature companies that benefit from increased exposure to new prospective customers. CEO's of growing companies cannot have too many qualified sales leads. Even innovators not selling to the "security or government" markets benefit from ASC's program allowing them to more efficiently and effectively test these new markets, which might be very receptive to adopt their technology currently used in non-security or non-government applications.

ASC increases the innovative companies' exposure and resulting sales/relationship opportunities (sales contracts, teaming, licensing, joint venture, sales channel or distribution, merger or acquisition) with the customers and enablers (advisors, directorships, investors, legal or accounting assistance, staffing support, etc) in the ASC community.

The customer/users (demand) represent federal Defense and Intelligence Community, private sector Critical Infrastructure Owners and Fortune 500 companies. These organizations are constantly upgrading and modifying their enterprise to prevent or respond to a litany of evolving threats. Some bolster their technological arsenal with the support of large systems integrators and/or others have their own network of technology sources. In either case, ASC extends their reach into pockets of technology they would not otherwise access.

Of course, ASC's program generates technology/vendor choices the client already knew about, but ASC also generates choices they did not know. This comprehensive coverage provides the peace of mind when clients consider a new technology that it has made its decision from a pool of the most viable solution providers.

Innovative technologies that pass through the ASC screening are frequently piloted (stress-tested) by the customers/end users to determine if a technology can address priority security challenges faced online, on the battlefield, at the border, in the airport or at the shopping mall. These technical/application challenges include but are not limited to network security, IED detection/mitigation, reduced vehicle fuel consumption, identity theft, asset tracking, perimeter surveillance, data analysis, portable/renewable power, information assurance, passenger/cargo screening, data fusion, email/wireless communications, etc.

By pooling the purchasing power of a number of client customers, ASC can scout the market, identify, screen and manage the process for a fraction of one full time employee.

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ASC Tech Scouting Client Benefits

Clients engage ASC on an annual subscription basis. The list of benefits and deliverables is described briefly in the following table. For more information, contact Roger London at Roger@AmericanSecurityChallenge.com or 410-340-5335.

Annual Benefit Description Premiere Subscriber Subscriber plus Tech Scouting

Outreach

Extends clients’ reach into unfarmed pockets of technology identifying technologies the client would otherwise not have known.  This provides client with alternative solutions to near term challenges, as well as market intelligence of technology horizon.

Timeshare ASC Efforts

Client receives all the benefits listed at a fraction of the cost of one FTE if Client were to perform all these activities themselves.

Quality Dealflow

The objective of this relationship is not to inundate Client with an avalanche of innovations, but to filter through them and present a smaller manageable portfolio of interesting technologies that might benefit the Client.

Leverage Proven Platform

ASC frees up Client resources by using its proven program to manage the process including communications from Challengers and the market, document and information collection, standardized scoring process, reviewer recruitment and management and a frequently updated and easy to use database. 

Annual Award Program

Clients will enjoy sponsorship status at no additional cost (invitations, speaking opportunity and branding) in the annual signature awards program highlighting ASC generated valuable relationships and transactions. 

Periodic TechView Demos

Compare notes and market intelligence with other Clients in private demos from the top scoring companies on the Client’s shopping list providing Client continual quality innovation dealflow.

1 per year

3 per year

Database Subscription

Clients can browse the easy to use Challenger database that is quickly becoming the most comprehensive innovative security technology database available.

2 seat licenses

4 seat licenses

Reviewer Selection Committee

Clients can see a sample of the market landscape with Reviewer seats on the Selection Committee.

1

3

Influence ASC shopping list

Client may customize ASC “shopping list” and add requirements not currently on it.

 

Quarterly Client Meetings

ASC staff and Client’s meet (call) periodically for discussion of Client’s unique needs.

 

Challengers matched to Client Pilot award

ASC markets the opportunity to have technology test driven in a “pilot” or similar relationship starter.

 

 

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What Others Say About ASC

"Critical to our national security mission is the intersection of the entrepreneur, the investment community and the ultimate user….and at the end of the day it is the American Security Challenge.  You are helping America meet it (this mission) with this Challenge and I thank you. "

Governor Tom Ridge
Former Department of Homeland Security Secretary

"This is useful for ArcSight to explore all these new technologies. We picked up a large number of pilots…and will have our product facing folks get involved to talk about the value to our customers. We are very excited about it; it is a valuable experience for the whole company."

ArcSight- Award Partner

"The process was streamlined and we are thrilled with the qualified sales and investor prospects that resulted from the Challenge. We have a great product and this (ASC) exponentially increased our exposure to valuable transaction candidates."

AginCourt- Challenger

We closed today officially with a $1.9m investment into a company you referred us just 10 weeks ago!! Thanks for all your help. We would never have learned about that company and a few others that we are tracking now without the hard work from you and your team at American Security Challenge.

Blue Heron Capital - Award Partner

"I've been involved in evaluating technologies for decades. The ASC platform has mastered the art of efficiently collecting the right amount and type of company data, in combination with a smart but simple standardized scoring system that is ultimately captured in an easy to use and sort database as well, perhaps better than any evaluation management system I've been a party to."

Bob Flores, former CTO of CIA and now
President of Applicology, an advisory firm in the National Security sector.

"The American Security Challenge addresses a spectrum of security challenges. It's rare that we get to cross pollinate with DOD or other defense companies and share ideas as we don't normally talk with each other."

TD Ameritrade- Founding Sponsor

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Successful Case Studies

Below are examples of general searches and hard target searches for a previous tech scouting efforts.

Case Study #1- Broad Search for Various Cyber Technologies
The Client provided ASC a "shopping list" of technology applications, which ASC folded into its master shopping list. ASC searched for these applications (data mining, network security, data fusion, etc) among others for its 2010 American Security Challenge, which generated 165 applicant submissions. ASC screened down the applicants and provided short lists to the Client in the various applications sought. From this short list, the Client selected six to pilot as well as two on standby in the event any of the first six were not able to proceed with a pilot. As of this writing, those pilots are underway and to be completed in 2011. Applicants were selected for potential acquisition, licensing, resale to Client customers, insertion into Client solution suites and/or deployment into Client's own enterprise.

Case Study #2- Broad Search for Companies to sub-contract with to DOD client
The Client provided ASC a "shopping list" of technology applications, which ASC folded into its master shopping list. ASC searched for these applications (renewable energy, fuel cells, unmanned platforms, signals intelligence, network security, biometric data collection, etc) among others for its 2010 American Security Challenge, which generated 165 applicant submissions. ASC provided the higher scoring companies in the areas sought by Client producing seven companies the Client is considering for different division relationships, as well as partnering with a Challenger for a specific DOD opportunity.

Case Study #3- Hard Target Search (for specific technology)
The Client sought a data mining solution to a specific and pressing problem. Immediately after engagement, Tech Scout and client produced a sanitized or public scenario that described functionality desired by Client without disclosure of the specific application. The scenario was broadly described as "seeking a solution that would allow the customer to identify patterns and trends in substantial volumes of data. For example, the ability to identify unique entities that were purchasing oil stocks on the first and third Thursday of every month with an "m" in it.

Scout broadcast this need through its network and within 45 days Tech Scout identified and had begun screening 135 vendors with possible solutions. Within the first 60 days, the top 20 possible solution were identified. With assistance from the Client's system integrator matching solutions against specific requirements, scalability, functionality, performance, form factor, etc. the top four candidates within the first 90 days. The Client completed its own due diligence on the top four and selected one vendor to "test-drive" in a pilot (small-scale controlled simulation of a live environment) within the first 120 days. Client was satisfied with the testing that occurred over the next two months and roughly 180 days after requirements were selected, the Client entered into discussions for larger scale deployment. The resulting contract was the first contract between that vendor and the Client, which recently entered into a subsequent eight-figure multi-year contract.

Case Study #4 Hard Target Search (for specific technology)
The Client was considering integrating a graph database solution into their system to address a specific and pressing problem. The Client was prepared to take one year for the conversation and budgeted more than a million dollars for the project.

The sanitized problem set described very large multiple medical databases of patients, hospitals and diseases with millions of records with frequent category heading modifications and additions causing schema changes degrading performance.

The Client's requirements were broadcasted and within 45 days 60 possible solutions were identified. Graph databases were a new concept and innovation was very bleeding edge with little traction. Two weeks of screening left 12 possible solutions and further screening with Client consultant identified the top four solutions matching against specific requirements, scalability, functionality, performance, form factor, etc. NOTE- these four were very different and included a federal national lab, a startup with 30 people, a European 10 year old company and a huge multi-billion dollar US based software solution vendor.

Within the first 120 days, the Client completed its own evaluation of the top four and determined that none of the solutions would satisfactorily address their problems. Although not delivering a viable solution, the Client was very pleased with the scouting efforts as it determined that the current graph database solutions did NOT provide them the performance they sought. The scouting effort saved a million dollar expense, a year of certain conversion challenges and summarily not making the wrong decision.

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