University spin-off companies drive innovation

9. May 2018
Universities research, explore and develop. Useful things emerge! They can also come in handy outside of the academic sphere, where they can bring money (that can be used for further improvement, for instance). In addition to capital, we are all now watching innovation in research and industry.
University spin-off companies drive innovation

Technology must move

Imagine that in the course of your doctoral research you discover a substance that speeds up wound healing. Why couldn’t you set a higher target than "just" publication in a scientific journal? The results of the research with a practical application should be sent further. They will be appreciated even beyond the scientific sphere. You must be pleased that (quite recently) computers came to be used every day. And nobody knows exactly what kind of research will affect us so profoundly next time.


Give me your soul!

You probably know that what scientists come up with and invent is generally called intellectual property. This can be handled in various ways, but it’s not easy to commercialize. If someone is an expert in asymmetric cryptography or curling magnetization (whatever that means), you can’t expect him to be a great lawyer and marketer as well. Honour where the honour is due: the exceptions!

That's why each university in #brnoregion has its Technology Transfer Office (TTO). It advises the researchers and the university itself about how to handle their intellectual property. Put it into a drawer? Publish in a magazine? Or should they sell a license to use (because this is the way the research gets into the real world...)?

Solution? Spin-off!

There’s nothing more than a spin-off. It is the most comprehensive form appreciation of intellectual property, benefitting the university, a private entity and finally and usually also all of us as users of the new product. For instance, the above mentioned wound healing substance (developed, by the way, by Enantis). The possibilities for cooperation are wide and always case-specific. Sometimes the university has a direct share in the company, sometimes it only provides the company with an intellectual property license agreement that was created at the university, and the company itself continues to develop it.

The benefits for both parties are clear: the university can have license revenues or revenues from its share in the company, and the company has on the other hand a competitive edge thanks to the innovative idea. The parties can also agree on the use of university laboratories. On the other hand, the investor will take care of financial or marketing matters. A win-win situation occurs when authors of the original idea participate in the development of research results.

Spin-offs are all the rage in #brnoregion

Sure, in the United States founding of spin-offs is even more in vogue. But despite that, new and promising "pieces" have emerged over the last decade in #brnoregion. Putting inventions on the market is the most visible indicator of the university's quality of research. You may have read about the biotechnological company Enantis (this is the one working on a substance speeding up the healing of wounds. It certainly is not the only one, Masaryk university took part in founding thirteen of them by 2017 and almost a dozen of them were founded with the help of VUT.

Among university #brnoregion’s spin-offs you’ll for instance find:

  • Neno Vision offers an electron microscope supplement that extends the electron microscope's capabilities by introducing 3D imaging.
  • Bender robotics designs electromechanical systems, electronics, or firmware for robotic products.
  • Mycroft Mind creates models and simulations that help energy companies develop their distribution systems.

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