$37 million venture fund combined to support Purdue-affiliated startups

West Lafayette, Ind., March 02, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- $37 million venture fund combined to support Purdue-affiliated startups

(March 2, 2016) Newly created Purdue Ventures will be the overriding entity to manage $37 million in combined investment resources to further support Purdue-affiliated startups and make it easier for entrepreneurs to apply for investment consideration to advance their companies.

Organized under the auspices of the Purdue Foundry, Purdue Ventures will oversee the deployment of multiple sources of capital that support Purdue's entrepreneurial ecosystem.

"These programs will continue to be supported by the Purdue Research Foundation, our partnering organizations, various endowments, private investors and state entities, but they will be managed by Purdue Ventures," said Dan Hasler, president and chief entrepreneurial officer of the Purdue Research Foundation. "We anticipate that these funding groups will continue to grow, and we could add even more in the coming months or years. It makes sense that we would put them under one umbrella to ease the process for Purdue entrepreneurs and help us more effectively serve the startups originating from Purdue patented innovations and 'know-how' technologies."

In the past two years, the Purdue Research Foundation has taken seed-round positions in no fewer than 35 companies, many from Purdue's entrepreneurial hub, the Purdue Foundry.

"Purdue Ventures will allow us to manage a variety of funding sources and our existing portfolio as a single strategically focused investment entity, which should increase the value of the whole enterprise," said John Hanak, director, venture capital and funding sources for the Purdue Foundry and managing director of Purdue Ventures. "By unifying our funds for deployment with integrated portfolio management, we can focus on managing and sustaining our funds for early stage Purdue companies as evergreen and growing."

Purdue Research Foundation's startup funding resources include:

Ag-celerator - A fund to help launch startups based on Purdue plant sciences innovations or otherwise impacting the plant sciences.

* Elevate Purdue Foundry Fund - Operated jointly by the Purdue Foundry and Elevate Ventures the fund expedites the translation of Purdue-based intellectual property to commercial sectors.

* Foundry Investment Fund - A sidecar fund that partners with other investors to fund companies that are based on Purdue technology or expertise in the areas of human and animal health and plant sciences. 

* P3 Alliance - Utilizing an online presence, Purdue-related startup companies seeking angel level investment can pitch their investment opportunity to pre-qualified participants in the P3 Alliance.

Purdue Startup Fund - Partnership between the Purdue Research Foundation and University Development Office to maximize Purdue's commitment to serve others through the commercialization of innovations.

In additional to these funding sources, the current Purdue Research Foundation portfolio of startup investments is more than $11 million.

In FY14 and FY15 Purdue announced back-to-back record-breaking commercialization activities with a total of 98 startups created and nearly 200 positions created. Increases in commercialization activities from FY14 to FY15 filed through the Purdue Research Foundation Office of Technology Commercialization and Purdue Foundry include:

* Global and U.S. patents issued: 156 to 178 for a 14 percent increase.

* Invention disclosures filed: 284 to 317 for a 12 percent increase.

* Licensing deals: 241 technologies licensed to 131 entities.

A 2014 report by the National Academy of Inventors and the Intellectual Property Owners Association ranked Purdue 16th in the world, up from 36th the previous year, among universities granted U.S. utility patents. The Association of University Technology Managers reported for FY14, the most recent year recorded, that Purdue is ranked third in the country for startup creation based on a patented university innovation. The University of California system and the University of Texas system are ranked first and second, respectively. Stanford University is ranked fourth, University of Pennsylvania is ranked fifth and MIT is ranked sixth.

About Purdue Foundry

The Purdue Foundry is an entrepreneurship and commercialization hub in Discovery Park's Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship whose professionals help Purdue innovators create startups. Managed by the Purdue Research Foundation, the Purdue Foundry received the 2014 Incubator Network of the Year by the National Business Incubation Association for its work in entrepreneurship. For more information about funding and investment opportunities in startups based on a Purdue innovation, contact the Purdue Foundry at foundry@prf.org 



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