University of Copenhagen
The University of Copenhagen is establishing a limited company to help its researchers across the start-up group and into the business world.
As the first university in the Nordic region, the University of Copenhagen forms an investment company. The newly established company UCPH Ventures aims to develop and facilitate the commercial use of inventions made by researchers at the University of Copenhagen. In this way, the university must also ensure that the company gets better opportunities, already in the start-up phase.
– Budding farms are a way to transfer the university’s knowledge to society. But in the early stages of a bud’s life, it is difficult to find investors who have both the patience and the will to take a risk, explains Rector Henrik C. Wegener at the university’s own websites.
Well, KU itself contributes to investments that must equip them to become robust and viable. Wegener now achieves that the university’s bells on its own researchers can spread to other investors.
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UCPH Ventures is established with a capital contribution of DKK 15 million, and the equity fund has been established as a side fund for Eir Ventures. The latter has, among other things, financing from the European Investment Fund.
The collaboration with Eir Ventures is an investment agreement, where Eir Ventures’ main responsibility will be to assess the investment potential, and UCPH Ventures will then be able to invest in companies that are based on KU inventions. The rights to these inventions are owned by the University.
One of the founders behind Eid Ventures, Stephan Christgau uses big words in his statement on the deal.
– This is the first time a Nordic university has established a collaboration with a venture fund in this way, says Stephan Christgau in the same press release.
The lack of capital is often the last obstacle to research and research inventions reaching outside the laboratories. Both Christgau and Wegener achieve reach this obstacle can be passed.
UCPH Ventures will make its first investments in early 2022.
NTNU investigates funds
Toril A. Nagelhus Hernes is vice-rector for innovation at NTNU. She explains that there have been some initiatives, but that there are no venture companies affiliated with universities or colleges in this country yet.
There have been some initiatives in Norway to establish investment funds for ideas from the university, among other things under the auspices of the environment in Bergen, but I do not think they managed to raise enough funds.
“The technology transfer offices (TTOs) have opportunities to go into the ownership side of companies, which are based on ideas from the owner institutions, but it has not established its own fund-related to the TTOs,” Hernes explains in an email.
NTNU has its own fund in collaboration with Helse-Midt-Norge and Sparebank 1 SMN. This fund has contributed DKK 100 million since its inception.
“This is not a venture fund, but pre-startup development funds which are allocated to academics and students to develop results and ideas from research for possible commercialization and start-up business,” writes Hernes.
She explains that at NTNU she is working to establish her own investment fund.
“As part of the innovation work, during 2022, the possible establishment of a fund for investment in a start-up company from the university,” writes Toril A. Nagelhus Hernes.