IP Group, the FTSE 250 intellectual property development firm, is to invest in a new platform which aims to increase the chances of turning scientific discoveries into viable products and businesses.
The Marblar platform is an online network for inventors to interact directly with the scientific research community to come up with new ways to exploit scientific discoveries.
IP Group says it has already conducted a pilot of the scheme using discoveries in DNA chemistry from the Southampton Nucleic Acid Research group.
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The intellectual property related to the DNA discoveries was placed on the Marblar network, then inventors competed to come up with the best uses for it. The firm says within three weeks one inventor had come up with an application which is already being assessed as a possible spin out company.
IP Group's total investment could reach £371,000, which would leave it with a 33.1% interest in Marblar.
Alan Aubrey, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of IP Group, said: "What Marblar is offering is an innovative way of unearthing new applications for existing science that might otherwise be overlooked and complements our existing model. We see this as a great source of new ideas, and potentially new companies, that could ultimately benefit UK plc as a whole."
Dan Perez, CEO of Marblar, added: "It's a shame that more than 90% of university disclosures sit on a shelf collecting dust because the path to market isn't obvious. Together with our 'Marblars', we're going to change that and, in the process, change the world."
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