Tech Ventures focuses on accelerating commercialization
The College of Technology at Purdue University has launched Tech Ventures, a proof of concept center that will accelerate the process of moving faculty and student innovations from idea to the marketplace.
Tech Ventures is led by Matt McKillip, executive director, and Lonnie Bentley, faculty director.
Both Bentley, a professor of computer and information technology, and McKillip have prior academic, industry, and start-up experience. They have worked with teams across Purdue, other institutions, government and industry to create Tech Ventures, where they say faculty and students can “plug in, start up and take off.”
When he was appointed dean of the College of Technology, Gary Bertoline identified innovation and commercialization as areas with natural growth potential and set a goal to increase both. Tech Ventures addresses that goal as it also offers its services to the rest of the campus.
“Some of the core strengths in the College of Technology are centered around entrepreneurship, innovation, and commercialization,” Bertoline said. “Our faculty and students are very creative at integrating technology that results in product and process improvements and innovative products. This effort will nurture the entrepreneurial spirit of Purdue’s faculty and students.”
Our faculty and students are very creative at integrating technology that results in product and process improvements and innovative products. This effort will nurture the entrepreneurial spirit of Purdue’s faculty and students.
“Tech Ventures bridges gaps that hamper the commercialization process,” McKillip said. “In the current system, there are two valleys of death: one between research and developing prototypes, and the other between the prototyping process and the marketplace.”
To guide innovators through product and business development strategies, the Tech Ventures commercialization process will include three core areas of assistance: networking, startup services and securing financial support.
“The entire commercialization process can be intimidating,” Bentley said. “We will help faculty and students make connections so more of their great ideas make it to the marketplace and so the resulting products have more impact.”
In addition to working with on-campus resources, Bentley said Tech Ventures will provide workshops and opportunities for campus innovators to discuss issues. They also will collaborate with a wide range of agencies and organizations dedicated to the commercialization process to provide the best information and guidance for innovators. Finally, the Tech Ventures team will work with investors to provide mentoring, feedback and investment opportunities for start-ups.
McKillip and Bentley will host an information session about Tech Ventures and its services at 3:30 p.m., March 28, in Room 314 of the Stewart Center on the campus of Purdue University.
More information is available on Tech Ventures’s Web site.