Commercialisation Routes

The initial disclosure of an interesting result to the Tech Transfer Office (TTO) is the first step towards the evaluation of its commercial potential and towards embarking on a suitable route for its exploitation. If applicable, an exploitation roadmap will be developed in close collaboration with the inventors and the TTO will seek to find suitable commercial partners within a reasonable time-frame.
 
Different routes can lead to a successful exploitation of the protected Intellectual Property (IP), such as:

 

Licensing the IP to established companies :

The University recognizes that it may lack the means, capacity, or primary interest to advance a piece of IP further in the product development cycle. It therefore requires an established industrial player with expertise in the specific field to further develop an applicable commercial product. For the industrial partner the IP of interest offers a business opportunity in which the partner wishes to invest and ultimately capitalize on. In a licence agreement the relationship, mutual expectations and commitments of the University and its industrial partner(s) will be captured and the share of benefits arising from the commercialization of the IP will be agreed upon.

Creation of a new start-up venture:

In some instances IP developed at the University can form the basis of a new venture. However, the suitability of the IP is only one aspect in the formation of a start-up company. The team behind a new venture and their commitment, determination and business acumen are key factors in its success. If suitable, the TTO will discuss the formation of a start-up with interested inventors and will assist as far as possible in the initial steps towards it. Following the incorporation of the business as an independent legal entity, the IP itself can then be licensed to the new venture. To enable the creation of a successful start-up, the University will take the early stage of the business into consideration and will negotiate licensing terms that are not prohibitive.

Engaging in a collaborative partnership based on the IP:

Some pieces of IP may not immediately lend themselves to be licensed but may form the basis for collaboration with a commercial partner instead. Such IP may be the key to receiving funding for further development or evaluation of the technology/prototype.

For further information on the exploitation process please also see the “From Project to Licence” brochure.