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Isis Innovation Present Successful SME Business Support Schemes at BSP’s Autumn Breakfast Event
Isis Innovation, the international technology transfer organisation owned by Oxford University, revealed the success of its latest schemes to support the commercialising of research to delegates at Begbroke Science Park (BSP) on 16 October 2014.
BSP’s Autumn Breakfast Seminar audience heard how the University of Oxford Isis Fund (UOIF), which offers tax-efficient investments for private investors in Oxford’s star-ups and spin-outs, exceeded its investment fund target less than 6 weeks after its launch in February this year. Andrea Alunni, Seed Investment Manager at Isis, confirmed that the speed with which the funds target was reached has prompted Isis to launch a second fund in November 2014, with the possibility of extending this format in to a series in the future.
Alunni highlighted how this new fund sits within Isis’ investment framework, providing a range of investment funds which support and finance the gap between pure research funding and traditional investment routes. When asked why supporting this “translational funding gap” was important for SME’s, he answered that spinouts who had received this support had been able to generate over 7 times the amount of follow-on funding to support future development. He cited the recent acquisition of Natural Motion by Zynga, raising more than $527m, as an example of the clear success route for investors.
Also presenting, Dr Jon Carr, Senior Technology Transfer Manager for the Math’s, Physics and Life Sciences sector, outlined Isis’ new SME Smart IP Scheme, which has been developed in close consultation with their wide SME client base.
The innovative 2-stage scheme offers a short, simple 6-12month development license to support initial investigation of the concept, leading to a 3-pronged exploitation license, giving SME’s the option to decide whether to go down the manufacturing route themselves; out-license their product to another company, or to re-license it back to Isis and reap future rewards.
The new scheme, open to all UK SME’s, brings with it the significant advantages of low or deferred patent costs at an early stage of development. The Isis Smart IP Scheme adds value and gives SME’s confidence to go from the lab to the marketplace. The pilot scheme, supporting 20 projects, has garnered accolades of its own already, a winner in the UK Intellectual Property Office Fast Forward Competition 2014.
Delegates also heard how the economic impact of the work of Isis Innovation has supported over 1600 OXfordshire jobs, making a significant difference in helping SME’s close the proof-of-concept investment gap.
Host Barbara Allsworth, of BSP’s Centre for Innovation & Enterprise, which provides fully serviced offices and labs for Oxford’s high-tech science-based spinouts, drew attention to the new ISIS office at BSP and acknowledged that many of BSP’s tenants had already benefited from the close support of ISIS, as she closed the session.
If you missed the session, and would like more information, you can download the slides here.
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Notes to editors
- For more information about working with Begbroke Science Park contact Dr Caroline Livingstone
- For more information about the University of Oxford Isis Fund contact Andrea Alunni
- Or visit http://isis-innovation.com/technologies-available/technology-licensing/sme-smart-ip-scheme/
- For more information about the Isis SME Smart IP Scheme contact Jon Carr