The recent financial meltdown has crippled many universities’ efforts to spin out early-stage start-ups, which in turn have had difficulty attracting capital from venture firms. Looking to give its own companies a leg up, Indiana University has launched a $10 million fund, employing an unusual strategy to develop a long-term, dedicated funding source.
Unlike many universities that rely on outside firms to invest and manage a fund dedicated to spin-outs, Indiana is setting up the program in-house. The school brought in some money from outside firms, but it kicked in the rest, allowing it to raise a larger pool and use its own technology-transfer staff to manage the fund. It will leverage the research from the entire nine-campus university system, and will also offer services to the start-ups, including facilitating contacts with outside investors and providing access to state incubator facilities.
To read more about this go to Jonathan Matsey's article at http://blogs.wsj.com/venturecapital/2009/12/18/indiana-university-fights-back-against-start-up-funding-shortage/