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ACCELERATING IMPACT 2018 FISCAL YEAR IN REVIEW


STUDENT ENTREPRENEURSHIP 2018 RANDALL FAMILY BIG IDEA COMPETITION

300+ STUDENTS 102 TEAMS 1,566

2018 STUDENTS PARTICIPATING IN INNOVATION INSTITUTE PROGRAMMING

BIG IDEA CENTER

Student entrepreneurship received a huge boost with the launch of the Big Idea Center, kicked off with a seed gift of $2 million from Pitt trustee Bob Randall and his family. For 10 years the Big Idea competition has been Pitt’s and the region’s largest student idea pitch competition, awarding $100,000 annually. Entrepreneurship skills are applicable not only to starting new enterprises but also to leading innovation initiatives in large companies or nonprofits. The Big Idea Center coalesces a range of programming and resources created over the past four years to meet growing demand from Pitt students for hands-on entrepreneurship experiences. The progress of Pitt student entrepreneurs in recent years is exemplified this year by two Pitt student teams being accepted for the first time into the prestigious Rice Business Plan Competition and by team Four Growers’ winning the runner-up prize at the annual ACC InVenture Prize competition. Four Growers, which is developing a robotic system for greenhouse harvesting, was subsequently accepted into Y Combinator, one of the top startup accelerators in the world.


UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH INNOVATORS ARE ON A ROLL. By nearly every measure, fiscal year 2018 demonstrated that the culture of innovation and entrepreneurship at Pitt is blossoming. The University set new records for invention disclosures submitted (363—nearly one for every day of the year), licenses and options (162), and startups formed (23). The startup number is a more than 50 percent increase over last year (15) and would have placed Pitt in the top five universities nationally* based on 2017 reported results. The increase in startups is driven by several factors: • Participation by Pitt faculty, staff, and students in the Innovation Institute’s commercialization education and mentoring programs is steadily increasing. • There is expanded availability of gap funding to facilitate the journey from the lab to the market. One of this year’s startups, Atlas MedTech, which is seeking to commercialize a surgical retractor tool, leveraged nearly $300,000 in funding from various University sources over the past three years to conduct customer discovery and market research and develop prototypes. • The Entrepreneurs in Residence (EIR) program is providing Pitt innovators with invaluable mentoring and is helping to form startups, including Atlas, where EIR Joseph Marcanio has signed on as chief executive to license the technology and take it out of the University. • Recent updates to the University’s conflict of interest policy make it easier for faculty and students to take equity stakes and executive roles in startups based on their research. Our progress is being recognized. The Innovation Institute was honored to receive the 2018 Exemplary Practice in Technology Commercialization award from the Deshpande Symposium for Innovation & Entrepreneurship in Higher Education. Pitt also rose in the rankings of worldwide university patent issuances to 21st, up from 35 in 2015 and 27 in 2016, according to the National Academy of Inventors and Intellectual Property Owners Association annual report.

*Universities reporting as individual entities and not part of state university systems

The University set new records for invention disclosures submitted, licenses and options, and startups formed. Some other highlights for the year include the following: • In October, the Innovation Institute was renewed as a National Science Foundation Innovation Corps (I-Corps) site program for three years. I-Corps provides funding for early stage innovation teams to explore the commercial potential of their discoveries. Since 2015, 104 teams have participated in the Pitt Ventures First Gear program, which administers I-Corps at Pitt. Those teams have received more than $300,000 in funding to advance their ideas toward commercialization, resulting in 16 startups. • As part of our multifaceted partnership with the Sleep and Respiratory Care division of Philips, we hosted the inaugural Philips Grand Challenge, which awarded $100,000 to three Pitt innovation teams focused on sleep and respiratory care. • Another new funding opportunity launched in partnership with the Department of Athletics and the Clinical and Translational Science Institute, along with the Offices of Research and the Provost. The Performance Innovation Tournament awarded $150,000 to two innovation teams that developed solutions for problems presented by Pitt athletic trainers and coaches. • The Innovation Institute’s affiliated Institute for Entrepreneurial Excellence helped form or purchase 75 companies last year and provided more than 8,000 hours of business consulting while assisting in securing more than $18 million in financing or equity for regional small businesses.


URES

329

PATENTS

363 74

66

102

98

2017

2018

80

INNOVATION COMMERCIALIZATION 2017

2014

2018

162 274

307 314 329

363

STARTUPS STARTUPS

INVENTION DISCLOSURES

274 6 2017

2016

363 23 INVENTION DISCLOSURES INVENTION DISCLOSURES

146

2015

20182014

2015

2016

2017

2018

98 DEALS

U.S. PATENTS ISSUED PATENTS 150

116 121

74

66

2014

2015

146 102

80 2016

2017

162 98

13

UPMC ALLIANCE PATENTSAGREEMENTS 23

74 13 15 363 11 314 329 307

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018 2014

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

PATENTS

$7.2M 102

66

80

98

74

2016

2017

2018

2014

2015

2016

2017

LICENSES/ OPTIONS DEALS 150

116 121

146

STARTUPS

STARTUPS

SINCE INCEPTION STARTUPS 23 162

6 2014

2018

2018

13

15

$THIRD-PARTY 1.23B 11

2015

2016

2017

2018

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

2014

INVESTMENT

322

IN PITT STARTUPS (CUMULATIVE SINCE 1997)

OTHER AGREEMENTS

STARTUPS

23

2015

162 166

6

2014

66

REVENUE

2015

11 2015

2


REGIONAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

75

NEW COMPANIES FORMED/ PURCHASED

1,209

BUSINESSES SERVED

$18.6M

AMOUNT OF FINANCING OR EQUITY SECURED

250

MEMBER COMPANIES

8,424

HOURS OF BUSINESS CONSULTING

556

JOBS CREATED OR RETAINED

$31.7M SALES INCREASE

65

PEOPLE IN ENTREPRENEURIAL FELLOWS PROGRAMS

45

COMMUNITY POWER TO PROSPER PARTICIPANTS


The University of Pittsburgh is an affirmative action, equal opportunity institution. Published in cooperation with the Office of University Communications. 111252-0818

Innovation Institute

Gardner Steel Conference Center 130 Thackeray Avenue Pittsburgh PA 15260

412-383-7670 innovation.pitt.edu @PittInnovates

Pitt Innovation Institute: 2018 Fiscal Year in Review  

Accelerating Impact. Innovation Institute: 2018 Fiscal Year in Review. The University set new records for invention disclosures submitted,...

Pitt Innovation Institute: 2018 Fiscal Year in Review  

Accelerating Impact. Innovation Institute: 2018 Fiscal Year in Review. The University set new records for invention disclosures submitted,...