October 26, 2017
Purdue startup ecosystem reaches 165th startup, $270 million, 200+ new positions in four years
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – At 165 startups, $271.9 million in funding and 200-plus new positions in just four years, Purdue is advancing commercialization, entrepreneurship, job creation and economic momentum in the Midwest with record-breaking activities.
One hundred of the startups have licensed Purdue University intellectual property through the Purdue Research Foundation. Another 65 startups based on company-owned intellectual property brings the startup total to 165 startups since 2013. Click here for a complete list of Purdue startups from years 2013-2017.
“These data are compelling, but this is about more than numbers. There is a great story behind each of these new businesses,” said Purdue President Mitch Daniels. “I’ve had the opportunity to meet the many Purdue innovators and entrepreneurs and to marvel at their amazing innovations. We are just providing the right hub of entrepreneurial support. It is the Purdue entrepreneurs who are making it happen.”
Of the 165 Purdue-affiliated startups:
- $271.9 million raised in funding.
- 152 are in active operation.
- 137 are based in Indiana.
- 200-plus new positions supported.
Since 2013, Purdue has initiated a number of initiatives and programs to help entrepreneurs who create startups, including the Purdue Foundry, an entrepreneurship and commercialization accelerator in Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship in Purdue’s Discovery Park. The Purdue Foundry provides practical guidance and programs for startups, including business development, venture capital experts, entrepreneurs-in-residence and entrepreneurial professionals. A brochure developed to ease the commercialization and startup process by providing a high-level overview and guide for Purdue innovators and entrepreneurs is available at the Purdue Startup Guide.
Other entrepreneurial resources include Trask Innovation Fund, Innovation and Entrepreneurship landing page, Purdue Innovator Startup Guide, Bechtel Innovation Design Center, Purdue Startup Fund, P3 Alliance, Ag-celerator, Emerging Innovations Fund, Boilermaker Lab and the Anvil.
“This is truly a joint effort among several entities to provide Purdue entrepreneurs with the best resources and guidance available,” said Greg Deason, senior vice president for the Purdue Research Foundation and director of innovation and entrepreneurship for the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship. “We are fortunate to have such a strong pipeline of innovations coming out of Purdue University, and what we’ve found is that many of the Purdue researchers and often their graduate students have enough faith in their research that they want to create and commercialize products that have originated from their university work.”
The Purdue-affiliated startups cover nearly all of the university’s research expertise including engineering, agriculture, veterinary science, information technology, technology, sciences, computer science, biomedicine and pharmaceuticals.
Azza Ahmed, an associate professor in Purdue’s School of Nursing, and Jeffrey Brewer, an associate professor of computer and information technology in the Purdue Polytechnic Institute, co-founded LACTOR LLC. The company is commercializing an app that could instantly connect breastfeeding mothers with pediatricians or lactation consultants to help collect data, monitor patients, and provide consultation and support while improving breastfeeding outcomes for new mothers. The company is a member of the Purdue Startup Class of 2017.
Brewer credited the Purdue Foundry for assistance in creating LACTOR, whose technology is licensed through the Purdue Research Foundation Office of Technology Commercialization.
“The Purdue Foundry and Office of Technology Commercialization were instrumental in helping us form this company,” he said. “Everything from meeting with lawyers, drafting documents, applying for grants and help with marketing, the Foundry helped tremendously.”
Ryan Frederickson is a Chicago-based Purdue graduate who formed ArT Wine Preservation, a startup based on his own intellectual property. The company’s technology uses an argon wine preserver spray that can keep wine fresh for weeks in opened, unfinished bottles.
Frederickson received assistance from the Purdue Foundry through workshops, entrepreneurial mentorship, networking and business strategy competitions.
“The Purdue Foundry helped me develop and focus on a business plan, fundraising and how to develop a marketing plan to reach customers,” he said. “The guidance and support has been invaluable to me and gave me the confidence to move forward with my idea.”
Vinai Sundaram, Matthew Tan Creti and Patrick Eugster co-founded SensorHound Inc., a software company whose mission is to improve the security and reliability of the Internet of Things. Its leading-edge software solutions proactively and automatically monitor IoT devices to provide effective insights into a device’s operational health.
SensorHound is a member of the Purdue Startup Class of 2014. The company has received over $1 million in funding, which allowed it to commercialize the technology. Some of the competitive funding won by the company include the prestigious National Science Foundation’s Small Business Innovation Research Grant, $75,000 from the Purdue Emerging Innovations Fund, the equivalent of $50,000 from Elevate Ventures and $20,000 from the Black Award.
“Our company is established in the Purdue Research Park so we can continue to take advantage of all the resources and expertise that Purdue offers,” Sundaram said. “We feel strongly that the Purdue connection has had a direct contribution to our success.”
Purdue also was ranked 12th in the world among universities granted U.S. utility patents in 2017, according to a report released in July by the National Academy of Inventors and the Intellectual Property Owners Association.
"It’s an exciting time to be at Purdue, and I am continually amazed at all the research and entrepreneurial activity taking place," said Dan Hasler, chief entrepreneurial officer for the Purdue Research Foundation. "These are outstanding researchers, students, staff and others who have a strong desire to make a meaningful contribution to our society. They are creating companies based on their own expertise, but taking advantage of all that Purdue has to offer to help make them become successful in the entrepreneurial world."
Purdue's Office of Technology Commercialization had 123 U.S. patents issued, 222 licensing deals of Purdue intellectual property with startups and established companies, and 21 startups created based on Purdue intellectual property.
Writer: Cynthia Sequin, 765-588-3340, firstname.lastname@example.org
Greg Deason, 765-588-5251, email@example.com
Azza Ahmed, firstname.lastname@example.org
Jeffrey Brewer, email@example.com
Ryan Frederickson 773-234-9519, firstname.lastname@example.org
Vinai Sundaram, email@example.com
Dan Hasler, 765-588-3475, firstname.lastname@example.org