Like other tech transfer offices, the one at CHOP, started in the early 90s, looks for businesses that can partner with the hospital and turn its research into products — that can mean anything from vaccines to medicines to research tools. It does about seven to ten licensing deals a year, said Ellen Purpus, head of CHOP’s Tech Transfer Office.
It was during the recession in 2008 and 2009 that CHOP began to consider spinning out companies, rather than just finding a partner company to commercialize its research, Purpus said. It would be a way to “diversify [the hospital’s] revenue streams,” she said, by getting equity stake in the companies that came out of CHOP.
One of the main challenges behind spinout companies is “finding dollars to move the companies forward,” Purpus said. The partnership with Osage, which invests exclusively in startups that are commercializing university research, aims to help that.
CHOP has worked on four spinout companies so far, with the first deal being finished in 2011, Purpus said. So far, all of these companies plan to stay in the region, she said.-30-
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