Mixed results for CSU Ventures in 2012

FORT COLLINS – CSU Ventures excelled in helping push through patent applications and in the number of startups created during its 2012 fiscal year, but its performance measures fell slightly in other categories vs. the previous year.

The figures come from the first annual report published recently by CSU’s nonprofit technology-transfer group. Highlights of the report include:

• Patent applications increased to 157 during its 2012 fiscal year vs. 142 the previous fiscal year.

• CSU Ventures helped to create six startups during fiscal 2012 vs. five startups the previous fiscal year. The nonprofit has helped create 21 startups the past five years.

• Inventions licensed to Colorado companies that worked with the organization improved to 31 from 22; inventions licensed to companies outside the state increased from 15 to 16.

CSU Ventures’ numbers look strongest as measured in five-year increments, but have seen minor year-over-year declines in some categories, such as invention disclosures, patents issued, licenses and income. Those figures:

• Invention disclosures fell from 119 to 117.

• Patents issued were down to 12 during fiscal 2012 vs. 15 the prior fiscal year.

• License agreements executed fell to 38 in fiscal 2012 from 39 the previous year.

• Licensing income was slightly down to $1.06 million, hovering at around the same place the past three fiscal years.

“We expect that those are going to gradually climb over time,” said Todd Headley, the nonprofit’s president.

Headley explained that licensing income often come from technologies developed five to 10 years ago.

That’s why, he said, evaluating CSU Ventures in year-over-year increments can be somewhat misleading.

“You really need to look at the bigger trends,” said Headley. “If something is off considerably, then we want to take a look at why that’s the case.”

The year-over-year declines shown in this year’s report aren’t significant enough to cause worry, he said.

Halfway through the 2013 fiscal year, Headley expects “fairly comparable numbers” as compared to the last couple years.

The report can be read online at CSUVentures.org.

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