VCs and TTOs: How to Launch More Start-Ups, Faster and Stronger
Thursday, March 18 11:30 am EST
Moderator: Orin Herskowitz, Columbia University
Karin Immergluck, Stanford University
Deborah Palestrant, 5AM
Cami Samuels, Venrock
Jon Soderstrom, Yale University
One would think that university tech transfer offices (TTOs) and VCs are fully aligned. One has a mission to move promising early-stage innovation out of the lab and into the market while generating reasonable returns. The other, respectively, is focused on investing in early-stage innovations that can generate both significant societal benefits as well as economic returns to its investors.
Nevertheless, discussions between the two often end up being more prolonged, antagonistic, and complicated than necessary. This results not only in higher transaction costs, but also in delays around getting the deal done — or failure to do so at all. When you consider that many of these innovations could one day save lives, it’s easy to see that the fallout goes well beyond the economic.
In this session, we’ll discuss the ways to create win-win outcomes when VCs and TTOs work together to launch world-changing startups. We’ll provide an overview of the key issues in university startup term sheets, best practices for structuring equity, royalties, and milestones, common points of friction around sublicensing, know-how royalties and diligence, and other recommendations.
You don’t want to miss it.
About the Speakers
Orin Herskowitz is the Senior VP of Intellectual Property and Tech Transfer for Columbia University, as well as Executive Director of Columbia Technology Ventures (CTV). He also is an Adjunct Professor, teaching an Intellectual Property for Entrepreneurs course. He has been a peer reviewer for innovation and entrepreneurship awards for the National Science Foundation and the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities; is a board member for the Center for American Entrepreneurship, a nonpartisan, not-for-profit research, policy, and advocacy organization engaging policymakers in Washington on the importance of entrepreneurship; and a member of the National Advisory Committee on Innovation and Entrepreneurship for the Secretary of Commerce.
Each year, Columbia Technology Ventures receives over 400 inventions, files over 200 patent applications, executes over 100 patent licenses, and helps start over 20 startups. It also supports Columbia’s 5 lab-to-market technology accelerators in clean energy, media, medical devices, therapeutics, and oncology.
Karin Immergluck is the Executive Director of the Office of Technology Licensing (OTL) at Stanford University, where she leads a large, internationally renowned team of technology development, licensing and industry contracting professionals. She continues to be a regularly invited speaker at national and international conferences, and has served as an adviser to several government and academic institutions in Europe. Karin is leading several new initiatives within the OTL to increase faculty and investor engagement, and to ensure that the OTL continues to be an active facilitator and promoter of Stanford’s highly successful entrepreneurial ecosystem, which has led to the founding of over 40,000 companies. Prior to joining Stanford, Karin rose through the ranks of technology transfer at the University of California, initially for three years at the UC Office of the President, and then for 14 years at UCSF, where she eventually led the Office of Technology Management as Executive Director for five years. Under her leadership, UCSF became a pioneering national leader in digital health licensing and collaboration, faculty were more actively engaged resulting in a 25% increase in invention disclosures per $100M in research funding, and overall licensing productivity was increased by nearly 40%. She also taught several IP-related classes and workshops at UCSF. Karin received her M.S. equivalent in Biochemistry and her Ph.D. in Developmental Molecular Genetics from the University of Zurich in Switzerland. She conducted her doctoral research at UCSF under the dual tutelage of Nobel Laureate and former Chancellor Dr. J. Michael Bishop, and Professor and former President of the Federal Institute of Technology and former Professor of University of Zurich, Dr. Ernst Hafen.
Deborah Palestrant, PhD, MBA, joined 5AM Ventures in 2018 as Partner, Head of 4:59. Previously, Dr. Palestrant was Vice President of Corporate Development & Strategy at Relay Therapeutics, where she executed business strategy including alliances, partnerships, and other collaborations and led communications. She has over 15 years of life sciences industry experience including drug discovery, company creation, operations, business development, and strategy. Following her postdoctoral fellowship, Dr. Palestrant was a lab head at the Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research, where she advanced multiple structure-based drug discovery programs. In 2010, Dr. Palestrant joined Third Rock Ventures as a senior associate and helped to build and launch Blueprint Medicines (NASDAQ: BPMC). Upon its launch, Dr. Palestrant served an interim role in operations at Blueprint Medicines. Subsequent to her return to Third Rock Ventures, Dr. Palestrant helped to conceive and launch Editas Medicine (NASDAQ: EDIT), and as part of the original founding team, she led the business development group until joining Relay Therapeutics. Dr. Palestrant holds a Ph.D. in biochemistry and molecular biophysics from Columbia University, an M.B.A from Northeastern University, and was Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow at The Scripps Research Institute. She is based in the Boston, MA office.
Cami Samuels focuses on healthcare with an emphasis on biotech, medical devices, and consumer health. She currently serves on the board of Iris, Unity (UBX), and XCaliber – and previously served on the board of several other Venrock companies including Corvidia (sold to Novo Nordisk), Spirox (acquired by Stryker via Entellus) and RegenXBIO (RGNX). Prior to Venrock, Cami was a Managing Director at Versant Ventures where she supported many companies including Genomic Health (GHDX), Jazz (JAZZ), Kythera (KYTH/acq by Allergan), Novacardia (acq by Merck), and ParAllele (acq by Affymetrix). Before her venture career, Cami worked in business development at Tularik (acq by Amgen). During her early career, Cami worked in corporate development at Genzyme and Millennium Predictive Medicine and was a management consultant at LEK Consulting. Cami earned her Bachelor’s degree in Biology from Duke University and an MBA from Harvard Business School, where she graduated as a Baker Scholar.
Jon Soderstrom is the Managing Director of University Technology Commercialization and Faculty Innovation at Yale University. The Office manages the intellectual assets created at Yale to achieve the maximum benefit for the public and provide a financial return to support the University’s research efforts. He is responsible for managing the intellectual property portfolio of Yale faculty members, including (1) defining and executing commercialization strategies including negotiation of licenses and corporate-sponsored research agreements, (2) initiating strategic corporate partnerships, and (3) development and marketing of business concepts for new spin-off companies to the venture investment community. Since joining the Office in 1996, he has helped form more than 25 new ventures which collectively have raised over $500 million in professional venture capital. In 2007, the Office created the Yale Entrepreneurial Institute to help undergraduate, graduate and professional school students at Yale to start scalable new ventures. Over 100 new ventures have been formed that have raised over $135 million in investment capital.
Prior to this position, Dr. Soderstrom was the Director of Program Development for Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) after serving for ten years as Director of Technology Licensing for Martin Marietta Energy Systems. Dr. Soderstrom was a founding board member and past president of the Association of Federal Technology Transfer Executives as well as a member of the Licensing Executive Society and Association of University Technology Managers where he was, in 2008, President and, from 2003 – 2005, Vice President for Public Policy as well as a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors.