Monday, March 4, 2013

Revenue Ideas for Inspiration Mars

Last week, Inspiration Mars announced plans to send two human beings in 2018 on the 501 day trip around Mars and return to earth. 

Inspiration Mars is the brain child of the first space tourist, Dennis Tito.  Dennis has announced he will invest up to $100M into Inspiration Mars to fund the effort for the next few years while Inspiration Mars raises the necessary billions ($1-2B) to fully finance the venture. 

Although Inspiration Mars is a non-profit, here are a few revenue generating ideas to assist with financing.  Some of the ideas below won’t generate revenue until after the mission completes.

These ideas don’t matter if you can’t raise significant(!) investment/donations from rich individuals.  However, these ideas might help Inspiration Mars grow beyond a single success.

Ways Inspiration Mars can make money:
  1. Sell Human factors data to NASA and other space agencies (during and post mission)
  2. The mission may require Aerocapture on earth return.  If the first mission is successful, Inspiration Mars will become the experts in Aerocapture.  Market Aerocapture solutions for future missions.
  3. Sell access to the mission data set
  4. With spacecraft mass/volume/power surplus, sell hosted payload slots for small experiments and commercial payloads (could I get my dog’s ashes sprinkled in Martian orbit?  Are you listening, Celestis?)
  5. Post Mission, Expertise in HW, SW, and Ops could be packaged and sold through involvement in follow-on deep space missions.
  6. Sell Media Rights (already planned)
  7. Sponsorships of various types [this list could be very long from naming rights to company logos on the participant jump suits (think NASCAR)]
  8. Deals to license the Inspiration Mars Name/logo for toys/memorabilia
  9. Celebrity Events with participants
I am sure I missed a bunch of revenue ideas.  Send me your thoughts and we can add them to this list.  Good luck Inspiration Mars.  We are all rooting for you!

1 comment:

  1. This project screams crowdfunding... what could be more galvanizing than an interplanetary mission? I say create a website commemorating everyone who contributed to the project - and the pitch is those people will be remembered throughout history by their descendants as those who helped contribute... I don't believe the risk-profiles of the uber-rich really fit the ROI timeline of this project (until we have some more concrete revenue streams at least) but until then, the "99%" has enough collective resource to make things happen, provided the engagement barriers are low enough.