The Resources Development Administration, or RDA, was an human interstellar corporate conglomerate and the largest single non-governmental organization in human space during much of humanity's early extra-solar exploration. During the height of it's power, its influence was so great that it actually outmatched most of Earth's governments in wealth, political influence, and military capability. In the middle 24th century, the RDA possessed monopoly rights to all products shipped, derived, or developed from the moon Pandora, in the Alpha Centauri system. These rights were granted to the RDA by the Interplanetary Commerce Administration (ICA), with the stipulation that they abide by a treaty that prohibits weapons of mass destruction and limits military power in space. The RDA eventually lost control of their precious moon after the brief but costly Pandoran War, and was purchased and absorbed by rival corporation Weyland-Yutani in 2380.
Humble beginnings Edit
The RDA was founded in February, 2001 in Silicon Valley, California. It was originally a small start-up company and was envisioned as a for-profit agriculture and fuel technology think tank. As their name suggested, they were focused on developing new and cheap energy and resource alternatives to fossil fuels. By 2020, the RDA was a Fortune 500 company.
Amidst competition from their close competitor, the British Weyland Industries, the RDA submitted designs for a worldwide light rail transit system to the United Nations in 2050. After the light rail's construction, the company gained sufficient capital to begin experimenting in new markets such as weapons development, agriculture, and space travel.
Space Exploration Edit
Possessing millions of shareholders by the late 21st century, the RDA had become the largest, and arguably most successful, of what were now defined as quasi-governmental administrative entities (QGAEs). Mining ventures on worlds like Titan and Mercury led to increased success. The company built some of the first interstellar generation ships in the late 21st and early 22nd centuries, a quarter of which never reached their destinations. However, the corporation's true success would only be realized when they secured the monopoly rights for the extra-solar moon Pandora, in the Alpha Centauri star system.
Expeditions to Pandora Edit
The company's early expeditions to Pandora were seen as a colossal risk; the construction of the ISV Venture Star in the late 23rd century put enormous strain on capital resources. But with exclusive mining rights to the moon's Unobtanium (which was valued at 30 million dollars per kilogram raw and 60 million dollars processed), and potential profits from countervirals, biofuels, and cosmetics, the enormous capital investment eventually paid off.
Unfortunately, the RDA's environmentally harmful mining operations on Pandora and the RDA SecOps' assault on the Omaticaya Hometree led to a short but brutal war between the RDA and the native Na'vi that ended with the RDA being driven off Pandora; humans were not permitted to return to the moon for another 160 years.
Facing plummeting income and massive loss in corporation value, the board of the RDA eventually decided on selling the company to rival corporation Weyland-Yutani in 2380. All of the company's research, outposts, and even their private security force, were absorbed by Weyland-Yutani.
Originally started as a small security force to defend from rampant piracy on several of the company's extra-planetary space outposts, the Security Operations (SecOps) branch of the RDA had grown into a powerful and feared fighting force by the 24th century. It was mostly comprised of former military personnel from Earth and the belt, now serving as a mercenary force on worlds such as Pandora. The RDA's SecOps strength was significantly larger than most other military forces on Earth at the time, and included several large interstellar ships, mechs, and heavily armed infantry. On Pandora, they received their supplies from periodic visits to Earth by interplanetary supply ships, such as the ISV Venture Star. The wait between supply drops would take between 4 and 6 years (depending on the ship), due to the sub-luminal velocities used by craft such as the Venture Star. This was a weakness that was exploited by the Na'vi in the Pandoran War.