Mississippi Governor’s Military Defense Initiative Task Force

Downtown Jackson, MS photo credit legalsportsreports
Downtown Jackson, MS

Kopis Mobile is truly honored to announce that one of our team members, Dr. Henry Jones, has been appointed to the Mississippi Governor’s Military Defense Initiative Task Force effective immediately.

The Task Force has been set up by Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant to provide insights from experts around the State to develop a strategy “to protect, grow and diversify the defense industry in Mississippi.” Retired Colonel Greg Michel, Director of the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, will serve as Chairman and Jamie Miller, Deputy Director of the Mississippi Development Authority will be Co-Chairman.

“The citizens of Mississippi have consistently shown their support for our men and women in uniform,” said Dr. Jones. “That has created an excellent environment for businesses to innovate and create new solutions to help our neighbors who serve. I am humbled to be a part of this team of entrepreneurs, officials, and other leaders across the great State of Mississippi.”

Dr. Jones has almost two decades of experience in product commercialization, development of electromechanical systems, and software architecture and design. Prior to the founding of Kopis Mobile, Dr. Jones was the Director of the Center for Battlefield Innovation at Mississippi State University. Dr. Jones has a Ph.D. and M.S. in Aeronautics and Astronautics from Stanford University. He also has a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Mississippi.

 

Kopis Mobile Is Covered In Innovation Report-2018

Kopis Mobile is pleased to be one of the success stories included in the Innovation Report-2018, an annual publication of Innovate Mississippi.

Innovate Mississippi is a non-profit organization helping to drive innovation and technology based economic development for the State of Mississippi. They do this by working directly with new startups helping them develop business strategies and finding funding by using their pool of investor resources.

Every year Innovate Mississippi publishes their Innovation Report. This publication showcases various startups and innovative business’ success stories from around the state. We are proud to be included.

“Kopis Mobile is a Flowood-based company that works to enhance the communications capabilities of military and law enforcement by finding ways to integrate last-generation equipment with modern smartphone and tablet technology.

Kopis Mobile started in 2012 while founders Henry Jones, Joe McDevitt, Josh Lunn, Andrew Putnam and Hugh Middleton were working for a defense contractor. They noticed a strange lack of smartphone tech in the contractor’s gear. The company opened for business in 2013. “A lot of military and law enforcement bodies spend a lot on equipment, but they don’t have the money for wholesale replacement. Younger people who come to these jobs expect modern technology,” Jones said. “Kopis takes old equipment and ties it in to modern devices.”

Kopis Mobile’s products can be used in chemical and radiation detection, radio communication, cameras, lighting, and more. The company is Jones’s fifth successful startup, so he knew the ropes in Kopis Mobile’s early stages and put together the company’s pitch book to present to investors. First, though, he touched base with a few mentors at Innovate Mississippi who helped him fine-tune the concept into something that would be attractive to investors.

“Innovate Mississippi’s Angel Investor Network was a big help,” Jones said. “It made the process much more efficient and allowed us to pitch to a lot of people at once. Even if you don’t get funding from an investor, they usually have questions for you that help refine your pitch and your business model.”

Innovate Mississippi’s $100,000 investment through its Mississippi Seed Fund helped spur additional investment. As a result, Kopis Mobile was able to fully repay the seed fund. 

Jones credited his partners, especially mentors at the University of Southern Mississippi, for pushing Kopis Mobile forward. With their help, the company has seen consistent growth. 

“We’re building a reputation as a company who listens, who works quickly and keeps things simple. We thought beforehand that those were things any company would do,” Jones said. “None of us like to see it, but the world is becoming a more dangerous place. We build tools that help those who protect us be more effective and be more protected themselves.”

HACKING FOR DEFENSE SOLVES SOME MAJOR PROBLEMS

Hacking for Defense or H4D as it is better known as, is a process of using lean innovation to rapidly bring innovative solutions to address threats to our national security. Steve Blank is really the main guy behind all of this and a lot of other things for that matter.

For a long time, our military and intelligence communities were able to field some of the most advanced technology in the world whenever they wanted and at their own pace.

Now, our adversaries are able to use social networks, GPS, low cost drones, smartphones, and a host of commercial off the shelf technologies to disrupt how we conduct business around the world.

They don’t have to follow any prolonged procurement process, go through multiple layers of approving officials or really test any of the dangerous crap they come up with to harm us. The can crowd source, open source or sole source whoever they want to get the job done. They make it really hard for us to keep up.

Steve is right on the money when he says, “We will not lose because we had the wrong technology.  We will lose because we couldn’t adopt, adapt and deploy technology at speed and in sufficient quantities to overcome our enemies.”

What Hacking for Defense does is teach students about the nation’s emerging threats and security challenges while working with really innovative people within DoD and the Intel Community.

“Student teams will take actual national security problems and learn how to apply Lean Startup principles to discover and validate customer needs and to continually build iterative prototypes to test whether they understood the problem and solution.”

The ultimate goal of Hacking for Defense is to develop a network of entrepreneurial students who understand the threats facing our country. They then link up with other super innovative folks within the government  to provide solutions to critical national security problems.

Utilizing the brain power at universities is not a new concept. The video link below will reveal some very interesting things dating back to WWII. The video is a little long, but I learned quite a bit from it.

Secret History