Tech Transfer eNews Blog

UW-Milwaukee Research Foundation creates gap fund to support university start-ups

By Jesse Schwartz
Published: August 12th, 2020

The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Research Foundation (UWMRF) has launched a program to help students, faculty and staff form companies based on university technologies.

Supported by a $200,000 matching grant from the Capital Catalyst Program, which is run by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), the Bridge Grant Program follows the example of other universities that have created funds to compensate for the lack of capital available to early-stage, university-based start-ups.

The UWMRF aims to raise $400,000 for the program, which will help start-ups through various stages of development, including translational research, proof of concept, scaling up, and more.

The funds will be granted in two phases. Start-ups that are successful after the first phase can apply for a phase 2 award. Participating teams will also receive support through the UWMRF’s ENGAGE mentorship program and the UWM Lubar Entrepreneurship Center.

“This is a great opportunity to accelerate strong ideas at UWM by using early-stage investment,” says Jessica Silvaggi, director of technology commercialization at UWMRF. “The Bridge Grant will be instrumental in helping our teams accomplish key milestones and attract further funding from agencies and investors.”

Aaron Hagar, vice president of the Capital Catalyst Program, comments, “Start-ups coming out of universities have extraordinary potential but are faced with challenges in converting the underlying research into business opportunities. This new fund helps close that gap and gets these promising technologies to the point where private sector investment can take over.”

Source: WisBusiness

Posted under: Tech Transfer e-News

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