Georgia Tech Showcases Commercialization Opportunities for West Coast Investors

"The goals of the event were to create an outreach to the West Coast investment community, give investors an awareness of the VentureLab program and create tighter ties between the investment community and early-stage ventures coming out of Georgia Tech," said Wayne Hodges, Georgia Tech's associate vice president for Economic Development and Technology Ventures.

In a half-day session on May 21 dubbed "Technology Day West," Georgia Tech VentureLab staff made presentations to 60 representatives of California venture capital firms, including some of the nation's top investors in early-stage technology ventures. In all, venture capital companies included in the event manage more than $12 billion in capital, noted Steve Derezinski, director of VentureLab.

Held at the Quadrus Conference Center on Sand Hill Road in Palo Alto, the meeting provided an overview of VentureLab - and highlighted six Georgia Tech technologies: one member company of the Advanced Technology Development Center (ATDC), two early-stage VentureLab companies, and three technologies in earlier stages of company development.

It also provided investors a look at Georgia Tech's microelectronics program, which has produced several new companies. Professor Mark Allen, co-founder of ATDC member company CardioMEMS and a researcher in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, described commercial potential of the applied research being done in the Microelectronics Research Center (MiRC).

California area Georgia Tech alumni hosted the event, their efforts headed by Brook Byers (BSEE 68), a partner at venture capital firm Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield and Byers - and an early supporter of technology commercialization at Georgia Tech through ATDC. Many of them investors themselves, the alumni encouraged colleagues to attend and helped VentureLab tailor presentations to the interests of West Coast investors, Hodges noted.