Story excerpt provided by Federal News Network

Written by Scott Maucione

NEW YORK — This week the Air Force awarded a contract in three minutes. That’s astronomically shorter than the three months it usually takes the service to award a small business contract.

The breakneck pace was thanks to the Air Force’s Pitch Day, which awarded 51 contracts to companies that have little or no experience with the military. The service doled out $3.5 million to those small businesses on Wednesday — each in 15 minutes or less. The first installments of the companies’ contracts were in their bank accounts almost immediately.

While Pitch Day signifies a momentous increase in acquisition speed, it also indicates a sea change in the way the Air Force looks at the future of its industrial base and who it spends its money on.

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Originally published March 7, 2019