New Venture Creation 2

Nuts and bolts of launching a spin-out company

Training outcomes

Understand the context of new venture creation in a KE setting 
Develop a business proposal into an investable plan through working with a real case study 
Know what resources are required to grow a business 
Know how to give a short verbal description of a business proposition 
Discuss the needs and roles of different stakeholders and how to manage them

The course also focuses on networking, providing a valuable platform to meet peers, discuss best practice, and interact with the course team and other contributors.

PLEASE NOTE: There may be a requirement for delegates to undertake some pre-course work/reading before the course begins.

Courses for 2021 will be delivered online - register your interest for October / November 2021 now.

Who should attend?

  • Relevant job titles: Relevant to anyone working in KE and/or who support the development and incorporation of a new venture 
  • Relevant sectors/organisations: Higher education and public sector research, NHS Innovation
  • Experience needed: 18+ months experience in Knowledge Transfer or a related field, experience of contracts and/or IP management, suitable for people who have limited direct experience of starting and incorporating new ventures
  • Supporting courses: Fundamentals of Technology Transfer, Research Contracts, New Venture Creation 1


Event description

Company creation is a key element in the mix of instruments that allow Universities to deliver impact from their funding inputs and research outputs. Forming new companies can be a key enabler of developing new technologies and priming them for the market place, and a key tool for the knowledge transfer professional. It can facilitate economic benefits including a financial return to inventors and their institutions whilst creating new jobs and services of benefit to the local economy and beyond. New ventures may enjoy symbiotic relationships with their parent institutions investing in further University research and securing rights to develop arising IP. There is an increasing expectation that Universities and research institutes should be skilled at setting up actively managing their relationships with new ventures companies. Creating new ventures is a complex, challenging and immersive experience. This course gives a framework for knowing how to embrace this exciting challenge.


Course Directors

Iain Thomas

Iain is Head of Cambridge Enterprise’s Life Sciences team at the University of Cambridge where he and his team work in fields as diverse as therapeutics, diagnostics, biofuels, IVF, epigenetics and agritech. CE’s portfolio of products includes alemtuzumab (Sanofi), breast cancer markers (Brevagen) and mouse touch screen chambers (Campden Instruments). Recent spin-outs include Morphogenix, Mission Therapeutics, Cambridge Epigenetix, XO1 Therapeutics (sold to Janssen), Z-factor, Phoremost, and Storm Therapeutics. Iain led discussions with GSK in respect of the University of Cambridge–GSK open innovation drug discovery initiative based at the SBC and was the Cambridge lead for the Apollo Therapeutics Fund. Iain has been an active trainer for Praxis Courses since 2004.



Dr Mairi Gibbs RTTP (Co-course Director)

Dr Mairi Gibbs is Head of Operations at Oxford University Innovation (OUI). A member of OUI’s Strategic Team, she leads OUI’s operational activities across the business, including OUI’s post-deal alliance management function, patent and licence administration team, and information systems. Mairi is responsible for OUI’s process and standard legal documentation. She has particular interests in working with University colleagues to develop the University’s innovation framework to meet current and future needs and in change management and professional development of technology transfer staff. Mairi is a member of Oxford’s Conflicts of Interest Committee and attends Oxford’s Intellectual Property Advisory Group. She has worked at OUI (formerly Isis Innovation) since 2002, and her extensive practical experience in technology transfer includes the formation of spinout companies, licensing, academic outreach, patent portfolio management and prosecution, and management of technology transfer teams. Mairi has a PhD in Chemistry and spent some time in the fine chemicals industry before moving to tech transfer.