VIA SATELLITE: Any chance of capturing more civil space work?
GAFFNEY: We’re doing the GOES N through P ground systems under a subcontract with Boeing and have been working on that for a number of years. We have a fairly lengthy history of doing business with NOAA, but we’re not doing so much NOAA business any more. The next big contract was NPOESS, and we were not on the winning the team for that program. We’ve never really had much luck getting into NASA as a prime contractor. Where we’ve been successful with NASA is through teaming with John Hopkins University’s Applied Physics Lab. When they go after a NASA programs they want to find the best, most cost-effective way of doing it. They’re in a competitive environment bidding for that program, so they’ve standardized all of their ground systems for their science missions on our systems. We are going after the next Landsat program as a prime.
VIA SATELLITE: Will there be any impact on your business due to the ongoing consolidation of the Fixed Satellite Services operators?
GAFFNEY: There are both challenges and opportunities. The opportunity comes from the budget squeezes, where these companies are looking to improve their balance sheets and cut costs. We believe our system has one of the lowest sustainment costs going forward, and the acquisition costs also are very low when compared to an in-house development. On the Intelsat-PanAmSat merger, for example, we have a number of systems. I think we are operating 11 PanAmSat satellites, but Intelsat does not use our system. They’ve always developed their own systems in-house, and we believe there is an opportunity there to demonstrate the cost effectiveness of our systems to Intelsat, so that our system becomes the standard within Intelsat.
VIA SATELLITE: At what point does Integral become one of the big guys and smaller companies look at you as the entrenched companies?
GAFFNEY: I don’t think people see us as entrenched because our CCS-C system has been so successful. We’ve met all of our schedule and budget requirements on the program. Where that entrenchment comes from or the feeling comes that you need to unseat people that are entrenched is when they are not performing and yet they still continue to get work, and that’s not the case with us.