Industry: Technology & Simulation
Facility Function: Headquarters
Year Business Started in Orlando: 1998
Local Employees: 100
Location: Orange County (Close to University of Central Florida)
Total Square Footage Occupied: 43,000
AVT Simulation was founded and has grown in Orlando because this location is near several Department of Defense’s modeling, simulation, and training (MS&T) procurement agencies. The company has been providing engineering products and services that develop military training systems since 1998, and has served Air Force, Army, Navy, and Marine customers.
“Orlando is the place to be for companies in the modeling, simulation, and training space.”Kyle Crooks, CEO of AVT Simulation
“The collaborative ecosystem of defense companies has sparked many innovative technologies new to the DoD’s MS&T field. That’s a big reason why AVT recently expanded and moved into our new ‘Collaboration’ building located in the Central Florida Research Park,” said Kyle Crooks, CEO of AVT Simulation. “AVT ownership’s vision is that this new facility will serve as a bridge between government and industry. It will be a place where defense sector’s coalition of Team Orlando, private industry, and government contractors can come together to deliver the training systems needed for the US Military.”
The company has big plans for expansion in its new facility, including diversifying from primarily defense service contracts and branching into original equipment manufacturing (OEM) for various training devices.
- AVT Simulation opened its new office in a brand-new facility called the “Collaboration” building in the Orlando “Quadrangle”, close to the University of Central Florida (UCF)
- AVT’s move to a new state-of-the-art facility was fueled by the firm’s steady growth and success in Orlando’s modeling, simulation & training industry
- The company in cooperation with University of Central Florida’s Continuing Education program delivers a series of “How to build a simulator” courses in their new building taught by experts in the field.
- Robert Abascal founded AVT Simulation in Orlando in 1998 after performing visual systems engineering and computer programming for high-profile aerospace clients
- AVT Simulation is a Small Disadvantaged Minority Owned business.
- AVT is a systems integrator for all phases of simulation and training devices but has unique qualifications in building targeted fidelity rotary wing trainers to include the Apache Gunnery Trainer (AGT) used by US Army Aviation.
What’s the Secret to their Success
In today’s competitive environment for recruiting STEM talent, AVT Simulation has taken advantage of the supply of the over 38,000 qualified tech workers within the Orlando region. AVT Simulation has succeeded in maintaining the software baseline at 45 simulator sites (and counting) with over 650 simulators in the field using the robust talent pipeline found in Orlando. Orlando includes the Army, Navy, and Marines’ MS&T procurement commands. In addition to this DoD labor force, Orlando has highly skilled veterans in its labor supply as demonstrated by AVT’s 20 percent veteran workforce.
Simulation-based technology has been a key ingredient to Orlando’s economy since it was first developed to take man to the moon. Firms like AVT Simulation have identified the benefits of being headquartered in Orlando, like the low cost of living, affordable real estate, super-friendly tax climate, and of course, specialized talent.
UCF, one of the nation’s largest universities, supplements the MS&T sector in Orlando through the School of Modeling Simulation and Training. AVT partners with UCF to bring AVT Simulation Training Center courses to students with the goal of providing the modeling, simulation, and training industry with well-educated and highly skilled employees. Additional institutions like Full Sail University, Orange Technical College and Embry Riddle Aeronautical University also offer specialized programs that prepare the future pipeline of Orlando’s MS&T workforce.
Where Does the Magic Happen?
AVT Simulation’s new Orlando Quadrangle office will be located at 4715 Data Court, Orlando, FL 32817. With over 43,000 square feet split between two buildings and joined by a glass atrium common area, the new building has modern finishes, aesthetics, and features, including additional amenities not typically offered such as a fully-equipped fitness facility, modern classroom for the AVT instructed- UCF Continuing Education accredited Simulation Courses, large conference/event space, game room, electric vehicle charging stations, common collaboration work areas, two high bay areas, and a shared rooftop terrace. AVT will occupy the building’s three-story side, while the building’s two-story side will be marketed to tenants to encourage partnerships and collaboration among the building residents.
What’s on the Horizon for the Company?
AVT Simulation plans to join forces with the Orlando Tech Grove to enable more collaboration and partnerships in the new workspace and the surrounding area. The Team Orlando Tech Grove is an initiative established in September of 2020 that allows Military commands in Orlando to collaborate with the region’s small businesses, innovators, academia, and Team Orlando’s modeling and simulation commands. The Tech Grove will allow the Navy to deepen connections within the industry and work with Orlando’s robust simulation and training sector.
The company also sees opportunity on the horizon with the U.S. Army’s nation-wide effort to modernize its training systems, technology, and expertise. New training systems are being developed by the US Army by rapidly expanding virtual and simulation capabilities down to the battalion and company level. This consolidation of training technologies will require significant support and collaboration between modeling, simulation and training companies and partners to achieve the Army’s vision of congruent and cross-functional training procedures. AVT Simulation and the other tenants of the Collaboration building will have an advantage through their ability to collaborate easily with other industry suppliers, such as the “Collaboration” building’s future tenant, AI systems provider SoarTech.
The Final Word
“AVT is blessed to be in Orlando where many of our customers are located, where we have access to a highly skilled civilian workforce, and where we can find the military subject matter experts needed to ensure our products better serve the DoD military.”Kyle Crooks, CEO of AVT Simulation