The Stress Test: A Novel Approach to Evaluating a Technology Transfer Office’s Business Model
Responsible for assessing and managing intellectual property (IP) and acting as an industry/investor liaison, Technology Transfer Offices (TTOs) play a critical role in translating academic research into commercially-viable technologies.
Technology development is inherently risky and complex, leaving TTOs with the challenging task of managing a process with timelines and success rates that are difficult to predict. Given this uncertainty, it is not surprising that TTOs have historically focused financial and operational planning efforts on short-term annual budget creation, often overlooking long-term considerations that influence return-on-investment and financial sustainability.
This paper describes how traditional business planning principles can be applied to the commercialization activities of TTOs to better understand the factors that influence sustainability, supporting the development of strategies that increase profitability and decrease dependence on external funding sources.