How Jeff Bezos encourages employees to be innovative
Raw video: Amazon founder, chairman and CEO, Jeff Bezos participates in keynote panel at Air Force Association Air, Space and Cyber Conference in National Harbor, Maryland.
Jeff Bezos a pitch for Amazon Web Services and his space venture Blue Origin in front of a receptive audience on Wednesday.
During an appearance at the Air Force Association’s annual conference, the world’s richest man, told the assembled officers and officials at the Pentagon that he plans to invest $1 billion next year in his rocket company to develop a heavy-lift launch vehicle, known as New Glenn, scheduled to fly in late 2020.
“As far as I know, we are one of the only launch of the companies actually building and manufacturing on the space coast,” Bezos said, according to Space News. “I want people in this audience to know how committed we are to this,” he said. “We are in.”
The mogul also stressed Blue Origin New Shepard rocket as a more cost-effective, reusable launch vehicle.
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“We don’t take the thing apart and inspect it between flights,” Bezos, worth an estimated $159 billion, according to Forbes, said. “We fly over and over. If you are building a space vehicle that you have to check in an intense way in and out of each other and fill in between the flights, that would be more expensive than a single vehicle. It really should have been operational reusability.”
The founder of Amazon, who also owns The Washington Post, responded to a question from the moderator by noting that it is crucial for the U.S. military to use commercial solutions if possible.
“We are now seeing a great growth of both companies, and government agencies, the CIA, the department of defense, use of our compute cloud instead of building their own systems,” Bezos said. “And the reason these companies do that … is because of the opportunities they get to continue to improve, kind of automagically [sic], without any effort.”
Amazon CEO and founder Jeff Bezos
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Amazon is seen as a front-runner for the Ministry of Defence still-to-be awarded $10 billion cloud computing contract would come on top of an existing $600 million deal for Amazon Web Services with the Central Intelligence Agency.
Bezos also stressed that the U.S. should maintain its “space dominance” in the face of the opponents, that “to the very sophisticated.”
He added: “You never want a fair fight. Outside the boxing ring, a fair fight is simply a bad strategy, it means you are not properly prepared.”
Space News reports that Bezos spent most of the keynote talking handing out life and business advice.
Christopher Carbone is a reporter and news editor covering science and technology for FoxNews.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @christocarbone.