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LaunchTN announces efforts to create statewide technology transfer office


LaunchTN announces formation of the Tennessee Technology Advancement Consortium to create statewide technology transfer office

LaunchTN announced a new collaboration to create the Tennessee Technology Advancement Consortium (TTAC), a group that aims to: 

  • establish a statewide technology transfer office to foster innovation
  • commercialize novel technologies
  • streamline the commercialization of university-based innovations across Tennessee

The consortium — the first of its kind in the state — is a pilot project that will initially work to provide commercialization and technology transfer support to three of the six locally governed institutions in the State of Tennessee. 

Commercialization is the process of taking a product or technology from lab to market. For technologies invented at a lab or university, the technology must first go through the technology transfer process to license the invention or transfer ownership to a startup founder or company to commercialize the technology. 

With the aim of democratizing access to technology transfer support statewide, the TTAC plans to broaden its reach after the pilot year. 

This expansion will encompass all Tennessee universities, overcoming cost barriers that might hinder the establishment of technology transfer offices. 

This inclusive approach ensures that novel technologies and companies have the opportunity to emerge from any corner of Tennessee.

The consortium is in collaboration with University of Tennessee Research Foundation, Vanderbilt University and three locally governed institutions — The University of Memphis, Tennessee State University, and Tennessee Tech University. 

To help in this endeavor, Commercialization Counselor at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga Jennifer Skjellum will join the consortium to build on the success of the programs and resources established over the past three years at UTC.

Skjellum will also provide support to three additional commercialization counselors embedded within the three participating locally governed institutions. 

In this role, she will work with each participating institution, commercialization counselor, and the LaunchTN team to help catalyze research commercialization outcomes and streamline technology transfer processes. 

This initiative was modeled, in part, after the success of Kentucky Commercialization Ventures and is a continuation of LaunchTN’s ecosystem building endeavors through the NSF Engine Development Award. 

LaunchTN will commit significant resources to the TTAC, including $80,000 to support Commercialization Counselor activities at each participating institution, along with funding for legal and service fees required for intellectual property evaluation and protection. 

About LaunchTN

LaunchTN is a 501c3 nonprofit partnership building an ecosystem of support for every startup and investor in Tennessee. As a public-private partnership, we are uniquely positioned to provide direct investment, while also supporting collaboration among founders, investors, researchers, private sector institutions and government. We foster entrepreneurship, technology advancement and workforce development by providing capital access, commercialization support, and connections.


Chloé Morrison
Communications Director

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