Oct 2013

Global University Venturing Summit

Intramezzo recently sponsored and attended the Global University Venturing Summit – a half day conference and dinner.

The focus of the event was on the rise of university venturing and the pressures on university spin-outs to achieve commercial success. These topics were explored via several round table discussions, led by the likes of Simon Cook of DFJ Esprit and Jacques Darcy from the European Investment Fund.

The event was opened by Bindi Karia, VP of the accelerator at Silicon Valley Bank. Bindi started proceedings with the proclamation that “geek was the new chic” and that it had never been cooler to be an entrepreneur. This sentiment was tempered by acknowledging that there is still more to be done to boost entrepreneurialism and that much can be learned from the US in this regard.

Susan Searle, ex-CEO of Imperial Innovations, received the Lifetime Achievement award at the event – recognising more than 20 years of experience in university commercialisation around the globe. Susan cited the three key ingredients in a successful venture: science, strong management and investment. She also emphasised the value of drawing on the US venture model of utilising “technical people who know the science” and can, therefore, bring expertise and investment to a venture.

Learning from the US approach to innovation continued to be a strong theme as the keynote speaker, Mike Lynch of Invoke Capital, picked up on this thread. Lynch described the key to making high growth businesses successful as being investors that can follow their money and utilise the management model, injecting integral talent into the ventures they have invested in: two things that US VCs are adept at and a model he has adopted at Invoke Capital.

For more information on the event, please visit:

VIDEO: Intramezzo Chief Executive, Dermot Hill, on adopting a more scientific approach to finding the talent that can deliver world-class university ventures – WATCH

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