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AUTM 2014 Venture Forum

AUTM Announces 2014 Venture Forum Finalists:

  • ArborVita Associates (University of Chicago)
  • Empire Robotics Inc. (Cornell University)
  • Phytelligence (Harvard University)
  • Qrono Inc.(University of Pittsburgh)

About the AUTM Venture Forum
New company creation and development has been an integral component of academic technology commercialization for decades. The Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM) will celebrate this mission-critical function through the AUTM Venture Forum at the AUTM 2014 Annual Meeting, Feb. 19 - 22, in San Francisco, California.

The AUTM 2014 Venture Forum will include a business plan competition, where academic-affiliated startup companies pitch their business opportunity to a panel of seasoned venture investors for a $10,000 cash prize and bragging rights. The event will provide valuable experience and feedback to our startup finalists, and will be educational for meeting attendees, who will observe firsthand the most effective means of communicating with our venture partners. We hope you will join in by applying to be part of our competition.

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Eligibility Criteria
1. The startup must be a legally existing company and have a license or option-to-license with a research institution (namely a university, research hospital, research institute, government laboratory), and the obligated technology must comprise an integral part of the startup’s business focus. Note: There is no territorial limitation on the company’s location.

2. The startup does not have to have received prior professional investment, but must be actively seeking funding. Note: startups that have already received (i) a Series A round, (ii) in excess of $2M in private investments, or (iii) significant sales revenue in 2013 or before are too advanced and not eligible for this competition.

3. The startup must have a manager/executive giving the venture pitch that is not an inventor-scientist.

Finalist Benefits
Each finalist will receive:

1. Reimbursement from AUTM of up to $1,000 for travel expenses, including hotel costs at the San Francisco Marriott Marquis, for the AUTM 2014 Annual Meeting, Feb. 19 – 22, 2014, in San Francisco, California

2. A complimentary registration for the AUTM 2014 Annual Meeting (a $1115 value), and complimentary use of AUTM’s partnering software, AUTM Connect™, at the Annual Meeting.

3. The opportunity to present to an esteemed panel of venture investors, and obtain critical and constructive feedback from the panel.

4. The opportunity to discuss their business and get feedback from partners in the venture community.

5. The first place startup company will receive a $10,000 cash prize. The winner will be announced during the AUTM Annual Meeting, and via press release following the conference.

Evaluation Process
1. Executive summaries will be reviewed by the AUTM Venture Review Committee, who will select up to eight semi-finalists.

2. Semi-finalists will be announced on Thursday, Oct. 28, and required to submit final business plans by Thursday, Nov. 7.

3. The semi-finalists will be reviewed by the AUTM Venture Review Committee, and four finalists will be invited to present their plans at the AUTM 2014 Annual Meeting. The panel may solicit additional information relating to the finalists prior to the presentation.

4. Each finalist will have 10 minutes to present their plan to the panel, and will have up to 5 minutes to address any questions that the panel may have. Each presentation will be closely timed, and cannot exceed 15 minutes total. The panel will thereafter determine a first place winner, which will be announced at the AUTM plenary session on Saturday, Feb. 22, and via press release after the meeting.

Key Deadlines
Deadline for submission: Monday, Sept. 30, 2013
Semi-finalists announced: Thursday, Oct. 28, 2013
Semi-finalist business plans due: Thursday, Nov. 7, 2013
Finalists announced: Friday, Dec. 10, 2013
Venture Pitch Competition: Friday, Feb. 21, 2014

Previous AUTM Venture Forum Winners

Retectix LLC (Washington University in St. Louis)
Technology: Platform of proprietary, resorbable, non-woven surgical meshes designed to bring improved value to surgeons, healthcare providers and patients. Retectix recently formed a subsidiary called Acera Surgical that are producing a “first-in-class product line of implantable nanofabricated neurosurgical meshes and related tools/accessories.”

Thermal Conservation Technologies (University of Illinois Chicago)
Technology: Novel improvements for more reliable and efficient cooling in cold chain transportation.

Vigilant Biosciences Inc. (University of Miami)
Technology: Oral cancer screening product for early detection specific for head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.

Endolumina Inc. (Harvard University)
Technology: Nano-scale assay attached to a wireless transmitter to detect blood in the GI tract and, most importantly, distinguish between fresh blood and old blood.


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