From Idea to Marketplace: Researchers, Finding a Licensee to Bring Your Ideas to Fruition

September 23, 2015

Part 2 of 3-part series explaining the process of licensing technology

Research shaking handsAs we said two weeks ago, the journey for bringing innovations from the lab to the marketplace is rigorous, and each step is carefully and thoughtfully examined. This week, we are going to focus on how the Office of Technology Transfer (OTT) can help identify a licensee to bring your discoveries to market by connecting you, the researcher, and your innovations with companies and entrepreneurs.

Identifying a Licensee

Once we have begun the patent protection process, our team begins the search for potential partners to license your innovation and incorporate it into an existing product or create a new product, known as commercialization. Depending on the invention, its potential market, and stage of development, it may be licensed to an existing company or a startup company may be formed. Most of the time, through your own working relationships, you as a researcher will know the companies most interested in your research and resulting innovations.

Marketing Summaries are found on our Technology Locator webpage, where industry partners and technology scouts can look up the tech field, technology, or the researcher name for the latest technologies available for licensing. We also showcase innovations at regional and national conferences.

Although OTT widely markets your patent pending and patented inventions, we encourage you to also be a partner of the marketing process. As previously stated, many potential licensees arise from the relationships that you have made. Your publications and presentations are also effective marketing tools.

The amount of time it takes to find a licensee depends on a number of variables, including the stage of development your invention is in, how in demand it is, what the competition looks like, and the size and intensity of your corner of the market. OTT takes all of these variables into consideration, even before you get to the commercialization stage. We want to ensure that your work is as successful as it can be. Depending on the stage of development, your invention can take a large amount of capital to get it ready for market. Sometimes, even more research and additional funding can be birthed from this development process.

The License Agreement

In order to successfully create a bridge for your invention from the lab to the marketplace, the licensing associate is your guide and advocate. Once a company has elected to license your innovation, a licensing agreement is drawn up, citing the rights and responsibilities that relate to how it will be commercialized, namely for the public good. Additionally, product development milestones are set and the licensing associate monitors the milestones and sales of your invention.

The commercialization of your innovation typically results in revenue—the license fees and royalties calculated with a standard royalty rate of the net wholesale generated by your invention. We discuss the royalty distribution more in detail here. The revenue not only goes to you, but back into UCF for further advancement of research and education.

As America’s Partnership University™, we value our partnership with you as well as the partnerships we make in the private sector. When you partner with OTT, you can focus more on your passion for research and teaching, and we can focus on the administrative work that enables bringing your hard work to fruition and to market. Contact us today and let’s start a partnership for the greater good.

In two weeks, we’ll talk about how we work with industry partners to bring your work to the private sector, which enables your work to be even more relevant and more accessible to the public at large.


Written by Deborah Beckwin

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