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CIT releases annual report on research commercialization for FY2016

Thursday, December 8, 2016  
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The Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) just released the Commonwealth Research Commercialization Fund (CRCF) annual report for FY2016, which tracks the Fund’s investments in high-potential initiatives throughout Virginia. Outcomes reported in FY2016 by Fund awardees identify early returns on the Commonwealth’s investments. The CRCF was created by the Virginia General Assembly to accelerate innovation and to drive economic development throughout the Commonwealth, while solving important state, national, and international problems through technology research, development, and commercialization.

The report tracks outcomes from CRCF award recipients during the period of performance and for five years following project conclusion. Highlights of the newly released report follow;

• Additional funding leveraged. In FY2016, CRCF award recipients reported attracting more than $69 million in follow-on monies to support research and technology efforts after CRCF projects concluded. Sources of funding ranged from angel and venture capital to corporate partners to grant funding. An additional $7 million was leveraged from in-kind support and nearly $96 million has been reported as pending, with more than 50% from funding rounds that are underway.

• Organizational growth and expansion. In FY2016, at least three new companies were formed to commercialize or otherwise extend the reach of CRCF-developed technologies, at least four organizations expanded or established facilities, and at least two companies relocated their operations to the Commonwealth. More than 150 jobs have been created, including full-time and part-time and with hires ranging from students supporting a specific project to senior-level executives to consultants. Nearly 150 jobs with a similar spectrum have been retained. CRCF awardees reported more than $9.5 million in sales revenue over the past year, with three organizations each reporting figures of more than $1.5 million.

• Products / services introduced to market. At least 11 new products and/or services have been introduced to market, as reported by CRCF awardees in FY2016, and two organizations anticipate near-term releases; an additional 30 technologies were reported as under development, including at the beta, demo, or prototype stage. At least 250 licenses for CRCF-funded software have been sold.

• Intellectual property created and licensed. CRCF award recipients reported 19 patents awarded, more than 50 patents filed or pending, and 16 patent applications under development; this includes USPTO, PCT, non-U.S., and provisional patents. Additionally, eight invention disclosures have been reported, along with several trade secrets and trademarks. Three organizations have executed licensing agreements for their technology, ongoing licensing discussions were reported by several other organizations, and at least nine organizations have reported licensing IP from Virginia colleges and universities.

• Regulatory applications and approvals. Fund recipients reported that 16 clinical trials were completed, underway, or recently approved for CRCF-funded technologies. Additionally, at least two awardees are engaged in or on the path to pre-clinical research and investigational studies.

• Publications prepared and accepted. Articles by CRCF award recipients appear in respected industry journals, and recipients have given numerous presentations domestically and internationally about their novel technology. In FY2016, more than 260 total publications and presentations were disclosed by CRCF recipients. Of this, more than 200 have been accepted and/or delivered, 35 have been submitted and are awaiting acceptance, and nearly 30 are being developed.

Ed Albrigo, President and CEO of CIT, said, "The CRCF drives critical efforts to advance innovation and entrepreneurship in the Commonwealth by identifying and funding high-growth opportunities at some of the earliest stages of research and development. The Fund provides research teams with access to capital at a pivotal stage in their process, enabling technological breakthroughs in key industry sectors that have been identified as focal points for Virginia." 

This fall, CIT announced that approximately $2.8 million is available for the FY2017 solicitation, currently underway. Although Letters of Intent are no longer being accepted this round, information on the programs and industry sectors is available via Award announcements are planned for early June 2017.

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