The OEE is excited to partner with entrepreneurial inventors. OEE strives to maximize the successful technology transfer of Marquette technologies while prioritizing Marquette’s research and education mission. Launching a successful startup company calls for commitment, dedication and dogged perseverance. With the right permutation of the following ingredients, a startup has the potential to bring significant benefit to society: compelling and innovative concept or technology, competitive advantage, strong market need, experienced leadership team and sound business plan.
Steps to Get Started
Every new company has unique needs and may embark upon the following steps at different times:
- Speak with the OEE about intellectual property protection, strategy and managing conflicts of interest.
- Protech intellectual property as this is often the startup’s key capital to attract investors.
- Network and find mentors who can guide you through your entrepreneurial journey they are invaluable in building the foundation for a successful business. The OEE is happy to help with introductions in our network.
- A credible business plan is essential not only to guide company strategy, but also to communicate the company vision, mission statement, business description, current market situation and problem, your solution, intellectual property, marketing and sales strategy, financial plan and projections, management team, timeline and key milestones, risk factors and mitigation measures.
- Determine the appropriate legal structure for your company and incorporate accordingly. At a minimum, the company needs to have a name and place of business before a license can be executed.
- Select a representative/business manager to negotiate a license with the OEE on your behalf. In some instances, the OEE may negotiate a shorter-term option agreement ahead of a license agreement.
- Prepare your pitch and fundraise - this becomes a constant priority and activity for any startup company.
License Agreements with University Founders
When Marquette inventors found or are involved with a startup company, Marquette needs to manage conflicts of interest and commitment. As such the OEE needs to maintain an arms-length relationship during the license negotiation and other transactions. The Marquette inventor will be requested to appoint a third person or party to negotiate on their behalf with the OEE.
The OEE will sign off on a final license agreement only after the appropriate conflict reviews and approvals are complete. Faculty inventors are held responsible for separating their Marquette research and education duties from personal interest in the company, financial or otherwise. Intellectual property and personnel cannot flow freely between your Marquette laboratory and your company – Marquette facilities should not be the research and development arm of the company.
Resources for Entrepreneurs
BioForward Wisconsin is member-driven organization promoting the growth of Wisconsin’s biohealth industry and defining the future of healthcare through leadership and integrated solutions. BioForward is the only Wisconsin organization representing over 200 biohealth member companies including biotech, biopharma, medical device, diagnostics, digital health, as well as research institutions, and service providers. BioForward programs and memberships support members through business networking events, advocacy on behalf of the industry, exclusive rebates through our select savings program, and educational and speaker programming.
Catalyst BioConsulting (formerly PICO – Postdoc Industry Consultants) is a business consulting group comprised of highly trained scientists that provides a broad range of consulting services for the many challenges faced by start-up and established firms. We offer pro-bono services geared towards the sustainable development and growth of innovative biotech and health technology companies in Wisconsin and beyond.
FedTech builds startups around breakthrough technology from the world’s most advanced research facilities. The FedTech team consists of seasoned entrepreneurs; early-stage startup investors, advisors and mentors; former U.S. government leaders in the rapid innovation space; former CXOs; and all-stars. Our primary sponsor, the National Security Innovation Network (formerly known as MD5), works to build networks of innovators that generate new solutions to national security problems.
gBETA is a program of nationally ranked startup accelerator gener8tor. gBETA is a free, seven-week accelerator for early-stage companies with local roots. Each program is capped at five teams, and requires no fees and no equity.
Gener8tor's turnkey platform for the creative economy connects startup founders, musicians, artists, investors, universities and corporations. The gener8tor platform includes pre-accelerators, accelerators, corporate programming, conferences and fellowships.
Milwaukee NSF I-Corps Initially funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) in 2015 and renewed in 2018, the Milwaukee I-Corps Program offers researchers and entrepreneurs a chance to explore the viability of their technologies and ventures through the “Lean Startup” or “Lean Launch” process of direct engagement with the potential markets. Through a five-week workshop, participants are coached on designing and validating a business model around their idea and deciding whether the idea is a go/no-go decision based on their business model. Regardless of the go/no-go outcome, teams will develop valuable skills in discovering the market – skills that will inform their research, business, and careers.
Wisconsin Technology Council is the science and technology advisor to the Governor and the Legislature. Launched in 2001, the Tech Council was created by a bipartisan act of the governor and the Legislature. It is an independent, non-profit and non-partisan board with members from tech companies, venture capital firms, higher education, research institutions, government and law.
Center for Technology Commercialization provides one-on-one assistance to early-stage emerging technology businesses throughout Wisconsin. From agriculture to biotechnology, Center consultants are experts in commercialization processes. We have over 60 years of combined experience and have supported clients in acquiring over $195 million in federal and additional funding.
Dedicated Resources for Students
The 707 Hub
Powered by the Kohler Center for Entrepreneurship and Social Innovation Initiative, the 707 Hub is where ideas are shared, stretched, challenged and realized. Part of the Office of Research and Innovation, the 707 Hub is open to all students. It provides unique spaces designed to foster collaboration, innovation and a cross-disciplinary approach to solving problems. Intros and Innovators features a “reverse pitch” from startups, non-profits and innovative companies that have project work, internships and full-time positions available and will conclude with a networking reception.
The Dorm Fund is a Marquette student-run venture capital firm.
The Brewed Ideas Challenge is a funding competition for Marquette students who have the next great innovative idea.
Student-Run Business Program
Marquette University's Student-Run Business Program (SRB) offers students one-of-a-kind opportunities for hands-on, experiential learning in business. Based out of the College of Business Administration but open to students campus-wide, the SRB program offers unique opportunities for students to get involved. The SRB program is partnered with Blue and Gold Ventures, an independent non-profit that holds all matured SRB businesses and employs SRB student-executives and employees gain leadership experience, learn business acumen, apply their knowledge, run businesses, and break the bubble that separates students from the world around them.