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Venture philanthropy could ease tech transfer funding crunch

With VC and government funding on the decline, TTOs increasingly are forging a path into venture philanthropy to benefit their tech transfer and commercialization activities.

Creating a philanthropic fund “is a very good option to pursue,” says Rosemarie Truman, president and CEO of the strategy consulting firm RHT Consulting in Leesburg, VA. “Finances from other sources are decreasing,” she notes. “Government agencies are cutting their budgets, so the grants that they give out also will be declining. It is important that TTOs identify new business models by which they are able to gain additional funding to pay for research, development, and commercialization. A donations-based funding mechanism is a natural fit.”

However, developing a sustainable pipeline for TTO-directed donations isn’t a slam dunk. “TTOs will quickly lose philanthropic-based funding if they don’t perform or there is a lack of transparency into performance,” says Truman. In its December 2012 issue,  Technology Transfer Tactics spoke with consultants, a TTO that is launching a new fund, and a TTO that wants to renew interest in an existing fund to learn the key steps required to navigate the philanthropic world and develop a fund with long-lasting appeal. To begin a subscription and access the full article – along with our six-year archive of practical case studies and success strategies for TTOs – CLICK HERE.

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