SPIN OUTS AND THE GREAT UNIVERSITY CHALLENGE

Taking a bright idea from academia and turning it into a successful business presents a unique set of problems for entrepreneurs and scientists alike — James Hurley for The Times

Douglas Hansen-Luke, executive chairman of Future Planet Capital, which orchestrates investment in promising companies that emerge from universities, said that the long gestation of spin-outs had informed its investment strategy: “We wait for winners to emerge. We only invest when they can demonstrate commercial readiness. Investment in the early stages of spin-outs is best done locally…”

“…Britain’s spin-outs need to take a global attitude, not a parochial one. If we take too parochial an attitude, it won’t scale up and an overseas rival will develop it instead. We need to get British companies thinking global from day one.”