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Welcome to another episode of Category Visionaries — the show that explores GTM stories from tech’s most innovative B2B founders. In today’s episode, we’re speaking with Gary Calnan, CEO & Co-Founder of CisLunar, a space tech company that’s raised $5.7 Million in funding.

Here are the most interesting points from our conversation:

  • Passion for Space: Gary’s lifelong interest in space led him to found CisLunar in 2017, focusing on industrializing space and creating sustainable human presence beyond Earth.
  • Addressing Space Debris: CisLunar tackles the growing problem of space debris by processing it into valuable metals for in-space manufacturing, transforming an environmental hazard into an economic resource.
  • Government Support: Winning their first NASA SBIR contract in 2021, CisLunar has also secured funding from the Space Force, DARPA, and the ISS National Lab, highlighting strong government backing.
  • Innovative Power Conversion: CisLunar developed a power converter originally for their own use, which has evolved into a commercial product with applications across various in-space systems.
  • Market Focus: The company positions itself as a leader in high-power processing for satellites and in-space manufacturing, aiming to be a foundational player in the industrial space economy.
  • Survival and Adaptation: During tough market conditions, CisLunar took on contract engineering projects aligned with their strategic goals, showcasing their resilience and adaptability.



Embrace Government Funding:

Early-stage non-dilutive funding from government contracts, such as SBIRs, can be crucial for developing complex technologies and gaining credibility.

Flexibility in Technology Application:

Maintain an open mind about how your technology can be applied across different markets, which can uncover unexpected opportunities.

Storytelling and Visibility:

Actively participate in industry conferences and tell your story to attract partners and investors. Transparency and visibility can drive significant interest and opportunities.

Strategic Partnerships:

Collaborate with organizations that align with your strategic goals to bring in revenue and continue developing your core technology during challenging times.

High-Power Market Focus:

Identify underserved niches within your industry where your technology can offer significant advantages, such as the high-power market in satellite systems.

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