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The Pentagon’s AI Shop Takes A Venture Capital Approach to Funding Tech

The Pentagon is shifting its approach to funding and building tech for customers. The Joint Artificial Intelligence Center (JAIC) will now use a serious A, B approach to building new devices for consumers. Mulchandani, versed in successful startups, has brought a new venture capital approach to JAIC. Now when consumers request the assistance of JAIC, they will be assigned two groups of members, a mission team and product manager. The mission team is in place to determine the agency’s relevance in the consumer needs and the product manager manages the building of the product. Essentially, they create a small part of agency data that is presented to potential vendors. Vendors must prove that their proposed solution fixes the issue before the JAIC scales all available data from the agency. 

JAIC has moved away from original pathways of small investments into multitudes of problems to determine what has potential solutions. Instead, they now have the Series A approach which involves a set seed amount of money to determine initial problems and possible solutions. After proposed solutions have been proven successful in small context they are scaled to include all available data. Currently, JAIC is working with the General Services Administration Centers of Excellence to create product manager roles in DoD and decide how to scale small solutions upward. Mulchandani encourages the Pentagon to not follow in the praised Silicon Valley’s footsteps and create sustainable venture startups.

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