Last month, Sofia, our Incubation Manager, was in Oxford within the ULisboa Eramus+ Mobility Program. This is a great opportunity that ULisboa staff members have, where they can share knowledge with other entities working under the same values.
To accomplish this mobility program, Sofia selected Oxentia, a consultancy company that focuses on tech transfer. Oxentia, started its life as an operating division of Oxford University Innovation (OUI), the technology transfer company of the University of Oxford. Their roots are in Oxford, but they work globally, with clients from 70 countries around the world.
During this week, Sofia had the opportunity to appreciate how Oxentia and Oxford University Innovation works on issues like entrepreneurship and tech transfer.
Meetings with Oxentia team members
Sofia had several meetings with Oxentia members. One these meetings, Oxentia members shared with her what type of programs Oxentia is promoting and leading. They go from entrepreneurship programs – where they help entrepreneurs from other countries to improve and develop their projects/business – to tech transfer – where they help other universities to implement and set up their own TTO.
Meeting with OUI
Oxford University Innovation contributes to the University of Oxford societal benefit by working with staff and students to apply their expertise and research.
Sofia had a meeting with Adrian Coles, who showed Sofia the way of work at the tech transfer office of Oxford University. The numbers are impressive, as this is a university with a huge history, so innovation is a core value for their researchers.
With a team of more than 80 people, the help given to researchers is like no other (we will get there).
Meetings with two Oxford University spinouts (Oxford Brain Diagnostics and ONI)
Sofia also had the opportunity to get to know two companies, both spinouts of the University, as both their founders were researchers from the university and started their research work in its corridors. Also, both researchers no longer work at the university and dedicate their time to the company.
Oxford Brain Diagnostics works on the issues like dementia and the way that this disease could be prevented. On the other side, ONI has developed a high-resolution microscope and already has sales in different countries and was recently invested by a group of VCs with 75 M$.
It was great to hear both sides, the Tech transfer office, and spin-outs, and understand their perspectives. The work that OUI has with the spinouts it’s extremely important and helpful for the future of the researcher’s work.
During this week, Sofia could also understand how the VC world works in Oxford. Innovation and the establishment of companies is something so regular, that in this city there are VCs only working in this market. So if a researcher wants to be invested, they don’t need to search profoundly, as there is a VC ecosystem working only for them (way different from our reality).
What a great experience this was!