Capitalizing on Commercialization: Questions your Technology Transfer Office Should be Asking

A new trend is emerging among ktMINE customers. Questions around agreements are becoming more targeted versus solely being about royalty rates. Take a look at our guide to understand current commercialization trends we’re seeing at technology transfer offices, where they are heading, and how to turn these questions into actionable insights at your organization.

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Technology transfer


How are other technology transfer offices structuring their agreements?

More technology transfer offices are asking us for examples of their peers’ agreements. This question tends to come from technology transfer offices with a smaller volume as well as universities entering into agreements in new industries where they are less familiar. By looking at peers, they gain valuable insights into how others negotiated their
agreement terms.

What are we looking for?
Gaining access to this agreement information enables technology transfer offices to acquire negotiation intelligence in addition to updating standard term sheets and agreement templates used for transactions. Ultimate insight into entity activity eliminates the guesswork of who may be conducting business with one another and the terms surrounding new technologies. This approach positions technology transfer offices to confidently analyze their peers while developing advantageous agreement terms.


What other licensing options do I have?

Technology transfer offices are exploring ways to diversify how they transact. Some universities evaluate standard license agreements, however, some are now looking at ways to find sponsored research agreements, collaboration arrangements, or a variety of other options.

What are the Benefits?
These arrangements offer the university flexibility in how their IP gets developed and commercialized. By analyzing past arrangements and structures, the technology transfer office is able to make a decision that offers flexibility along with the financial certainty they are looking for. Universities equipped with tailored research solutions quickly leverage accurate licensing information to explore the most advantageous strategies.

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What has my potential licensee agreed to in the past?

Competitive intelligence is driving the new era of agreement research. Technology transfer offices are needing to head into negotiations and term sheet discussions equipped with as much information as possible.

What can we learn from past agreements?
By accessing prior agreements of the entity they are negotiating with, universities can draft more beneficial terms. Uncovering previous agreement terms, positions technology transfer offices to save costs and enter discussions with accurate initial drafts. Arming with past examples saves costs when it comes to contract reviews with more accuracy on the initial drafts.


How can I set the payment for my transaction?

Technology transfer offices are understanding there are more ways to structure payment terms. Equity, up-front, lump sum, milestones, and minimums are ways that ktMINE sees universities getting compensation for their IP, besides the standard royalty rates.

Why should we explore payment terms?
Some universities want equity in off-shoot technology transfer office-affiliated companies or with start-ups. Others look to get revenue into the university quicker by selling the asset as a lump sum payment or taking a lower royalty rate and receiving higher up-front payments. While others want to set minimums to ensure the IP is commercialized by the licensee. Ultimately, each technology transfer office has their own motivations in asking for these, and seeing the options help develop strong commercialization strategies.

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How can I support my transaction internally with my director?

Internal support for a deal is an integral part of a successful commercialization strategy. Aligning all levels within the technology transfer office creates added value for accessing and leveraging agreement data.

What should we include?
Getting stuck in the trap of stock agreements isn’t going to propel the department or the technology transfer office forward. Utilizing deals and their structures from other successful collaborations is one way to stay clear of this trap. Many universities want direct insight to the agreement data landscape for licenses. This helps the licensing team and their director feel confident with a direction.

Sure, stock royalty rates are useful as a rule of thumb, but seeing the complete landscape and options gives more certainty that the technology transfer office is getting enough from their technology transfer offices and driving revenue back into the university system. It’s vital for universities to employ tools that align all levels of the organization throughout the entire commercialization process.

Identifying, asking, and developing a strategic approach to these questions can be a challenge for any organization without detailed insights. Those insights are just some of the many benefits delivered by ktMINE. Our innovative research applications and data services give your technology transfer office the leading edge. Uncover potential partners, determine the value of technologies, and confidently construct and negotiate licensing terms. Learn more about how ktMINE can support your university’s commercialization efforts.

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