Carlsbad, CA 92009
Highlights: 2100 employees, $688 million sales
There is no doubt that SBIR funds have made a big difference at ViaSat, a digital communications company specializing in satellite and wireless networking technologies. ViaSat’s first SBIR Phase I contract was from the Navy for the Communication Environment Simulator (CES), a technology that has evolved into a state-of-the-art simulator for testing the F-22 Fighter Aircraft avionic systems and resulted in several spin-off programs.
The CES system can accurately simulate information communications during air combat situations, not only between various DoD component systems but also among the allies. Typically, these systems must be tested with live flights that are very expensive. ViaSat’s CES can be used during the development stage, saving the taxpayer money by avoiding the need to make corrections later in the development cycle.
Over time, ViaSat has established an understanding of the technology needs of the DoD and grown the company through non-SBIR funded sales and R&D while reducing its reliance on SBIR funding. Over the last ten years it has received over $175 million in Phase III (non-SBIR) funding directly from the DoD for a variety of products ranging from ones used in training to ones for the electronic transmission of sensitive information.
In the words of Jim Collins, Vice President of Business Development, “The new technology and products that have resulted from the SBIR sponsored projects have been a major determinant in the rapid and successful growth of the company.” ViaSat truly epitomizes what Congress intended when it established the SBIR program in 1982.
Founded in 1986, ViaSat received its first SBIR contract in 1987 and since then has been on the fast track to growth and prosperity. ViaSat has experienced tremendous growth in both sales and personnel over the last ten years. In fact, ViaSat’s acquisition of a business unit from Scientific Atlanta last year increased its staff to over 750, removing it from the ranks of small business and mandating graduation from the SBIR program. ViaSat produces innovative satellite and other digital communication products that enable fast, secure, and efficient communications to any location.
6155 El Camino Real
Carlsbad, CA 92009