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Commercialization at the University of Waterloo ideas start here ™ Scott Inwood Director Commercialization. Location. Province of Ontario Most populated area of Canada (75km from Toronto) Close to U.S Border (Niagara Falls 130km, Detroit 250km)

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Commercialization at the University of Waterlooideas start here™Scott InwoodDirector Commercialization


Province of Ontario

Most populated area of Canada (75km from Toronto)

Close to U.S Border (Niagara Falls 130km, Detroit 250km)

Waterloo – concentration of high tech companies (RIM, Dalsa, Open Text, Google, Sybase, Agfa, ComDev, etc)

Quick facts the numbers
Quick Facts…the Numbers

  • 6 Faculties ( Applied

    Health Sciences, Arts,

    Environmental Studies,

    Science, Math, Engineering)

  • 29000 undergraduate students, 4800 graduate students, (4500 international), 1100 faculty members

  • Largest co-operative education program in the world

    • 16,000 students enrolled

    • 4500 employers

  • Top research university three years in

    a row (Comprehensive category) Researchoce

  • New: Institute for Quantum Computing and

    Institute for Nano Technology

More quick facts
More Quick Facts…

  • $190 M annual research

  • Only dedicated faculty of Mathematics in North America

    • World’s largest centre for education in math and computer sciences

  • Largest concentration of quantum information research in the world

  • One of Canada’s largest Engineering faculty

  • Top research university three years in a row (Comprehensive category) Researchoce

Waterloo in the beginning
Waterloo…in the beginning

  • 1957 - vision to build close research relationships with industry

  • Co-op Education Program – 1st in North America (attract students and build industry partnerships)

  • Focus on Engineering and Math (1st to create a Faculty of Math)

  • Inventor ownership of intellectual property (an incentive to attract leading & entrepreneurial Researchers)

Intellectual property policy
Intellectual Property Policy

  • Inventors OWN- no obligation to

    share with the University

    (exception for industry sponsored

    research contracts)

  • Philosophy:

    • Ownership attracts high quality entrepreneurial researchers

    • Incentive is best motivator to promote transfer of technology for societal use and benefit

  • Result:UW widely acknowledged as most entrepreneurial research environment in Canada

    • Canada’s most innovative university 20 years in a row (Maclean’s Magazine)

Partnering relationship
Partnering Relationship

  • Based on mutual desire to partner in commercialization

  • Formal Researcher’s Agreement :

    • Inventor keeps ownership and grants exclusive right to commercialize

    • Revenue sharing (net of patent cost recovery) Inventor(s) 75% and University (25%)


Waterloo commercialization office watco
Waterloo Commercialization Office(WatCo)

  • IP Protection (patents)

  • Prototype Development\Validation

  • Access to commercialization

    expertise (staff)

    • Technical backgrounds cover all facets of Engineering and Physical Sciences

    • Minimum 8 years private sector experience

    • Entrepreneur-in-Residence

      Building Value …….we convert ideas into opportunities

Startup model
Startup Model

  • Equity in startup company and grants exclusive license (royalty payments)

  • Incentive model – all participants in company need to achieve performance milestones to earn stock options

  • Recruit experienced management “sweat equity”

  • University provides ongoing “hands-on” support

  • Inventor provides ongoing technical support

Startup Model

Exclusive License

Equity, Royalty


Stock Options

  • Devulcanization process to

    recycle scrap tires ( 20-30%)

  • University secured prototype

    funding from Government

  • Recruitment of Senior Manager

  • $750,000 investment and debt financing (2009)

  • Pilot scale testing (2010)

  • Partnership negotiations (2011)

  • Looking for more investment = full scale plant (2012)

Other entrepreneurial support systems
Other Entrepreneurial Support Systems

  • Velocity

    • undergraduate student startup mentoring residence

    • Velocity Garage – free office space

    • Venture Fund – funded $1M by former student

    • Since 2008, over 180 projects, 34 companies created raising $30M in funding and creating over 600 jobs


Other entrepreneurial support systems continued
Other Entrepreneurial Support Systems..continued

  • Conrad – Business, Entrepreneurship,Technology

    • MBET Program – student teams working on startup practicum

    • Business plan competitions

    • 50 new startups over past 10 years

  • WatCo

    • Scientist and Engineers (SEB) Commercialization Fellowships

    • Funding partnership with Federal Gov’t

      • $60k for students to launch hi-tech business

    • Will support 15 fellowships


Recent commercialization impact
Recent Commercialization Impact

  • Accelerator Centre :

    • As of 2011, 19 graduate companies, 84 companies incubated, raising $72M in funding and generating $43M in revenue and over 600 jobs

  • Velocity

    • Since 2008, over 180 projects, 34 companies created raising $30M in funding and creating over 600 jobs

  • WatCo

    • Since 2009:

      • 5 startups raising over $2M in seed financing

      • 24 license agreements with existing companies

      • Annual licensing revenue of ~ $500k/year

      • ~ $3M in prototype development funding

  • Regional commercialization partners
    Regional Commercialization Partners

    • Accelerator Centre – North Campus

      Not for profit business mentoring facility for start-up companies

    • C4 Network

      South western Ontario University technology transfer collaboration

    • Communitech

      Waterloo regional high tech association – “Digital Media Hub”

    C4 network
    C4 Network

    Commercialization collaboration amongst Southwestern Ontario universities

    University of Waterloo

    University of Western Ontario

    McMaster University

    University of Guelph

    Wilfrid Laurier University

    University of Windsor

    • • Resource sharing (people)

    • • Proof of Principle funding

    • Targeted industry seminars\workshopsy

    Accelerator centre
    Accelerator Centre

    • Located on north campus

    • Business mentors who provide advice and governance discipline

      • network of expert service providers including legal, IP, HR, and accounting

        • on- and off-site organized special networking events

        • daily networking opportunities with other entrepreneurs

    • Information Technology company association

    • Digital Media Hub = 44,000 ft² facility that supports start-ups in the digital media market

    • Assisted > 450 start-ups with mentoring services, networking, access to capital

    • Client companies have raised over $300M in venture funding

    • 573 jobs created by start-ups

    Waterloo entrepreneurial ecosystem it takes a village to raise a child
    Waterloo Entrepreneurial EcoSystem“It takes a village to raise a child”


    Business Mentoring facility

    High Tech Association –

    “Digital Media Hub”