The Lassonde New Venture Development Center’s mission is to assist researchers with breakthrough technologies and determine the commercialization potential of those ideas while providing students a unique educational experience in new business development.

The New Venture Development Center is comprised of graduate students from engineering, science, business and other majors. The center is run by an accomplished local entrepreneur, with an advisory board made up of venture capitalists and inventor/entrepreneurs.

How Program Works

During a year-long program, students receive weekly mentoring and teaching from both the executive director and local professionals. Students are trained in the various disciplines involved with early-stage business development, from intellectual property to market analysis and strategy to writing a business plan. While receiving this training, students work in teams to evaluate and develop business opportunities based on real technologies coming out of the labs at the University of Utah. The result is an unparalleled, real-world education in technology entrepreneurship that will create future leaders in the high tech industry.

How We Help Faculty

The Lassonde New Venture Development Center’s aim is not only to ensure university technologies for education, but also to use the educational process to add value to a potential high-tech company. The transition from breakthrough invention to a marketable product and startup company is a leap of faith, often requiring a large investment of both time and money from the inventor. The New Venture Development Center works to narrow that gap and decrease risk for the entrepreneur. The services we offer for technologies that pass preliminary evaluation criteria include:

  • Finding and evaluating market applications for the product(s)
  • Extensive research into the size, growth, and direction of potential markets
  • Developing competitor profiles and market penetration strategy
  • Evaluating and developing business models
  • Consulting on funding strategies

In order for the New Venture Development Center to provide the highest quality of work, it is expected that the participating researcher will help students gain a general understanding of the technical aspects of their product and help in mentoring for specific projects. A confidentiality policy has been developed with legal counsel to ensure the protection of the intellectual property interests of the inventor.