Creating a commercialization pathway – transferring technologies from public to private sector

July 5, 20200

Sathguru managed technology transfer for Indo-Swiss Collaboration in Biotechnology (ISCB), a bilateral program between the governments of India and Switzerland engaging leading private sector entities and ensuring commercialization success of research outcomes. 

Context: Bi-lateral research investments with substantial impact potential  

A large public sector organization which directs life science research in India was a collaborator in a bilateral program with the Swiss government in funding public research institutes to develop biotechnology led solutions for application in agriculture and a microbial platform technology as a Bio fertilizer. Our client, being the funding organization invested significant amount during the life of the project generating portfolio of technologies with potential for commercialization and socio-economic impact. The public research institutes that were recipients of the funds and developers of the technology had little experience in product commercialization given the research mandate of their organization. The collaborators of the bilateral program approached Sathguru to develop an enabling strategy, facilitate IP protection and recognition and to commercialize the products through a public private partnership model. 


The scope of Sathguru’s engagement included: 

  1. Review of research outcomes and IP potential: Critically evaluate research programs to identify technologies ready for translational phase of product development. 
  2. IP protection strategy: Assess the opportunity for intellectual property (IP) protection and know-how classification, assess level of co-ownership of IP and aspects such as background and foreground IP creation  
  3. IP commercialization and outreach: Identify potential industry partners for technology transfer and commercialization 
  4. Technology Transfer: Structure collaborative partnerships between private and public sector for translation and validation of the technology. 
  5. Transaction stewardship: Handhold the public sector ISCB grantees through the entire technology licensing cycle. 


Sathguru’s approach was to identify the strengths of the technology, its competitive advantage in the market and intellectual property potential to garner interest in the private sector for technology licensing and commercialization. 

To achieve this, Sathguru: 

1.Conducted detailed technical review to:

  • Analyze the research program of each of the ISCB grantees and the commercialization potential of the intellectual property developed. 

2.Conducted market research and obtain industry feedback to:

  • Identify and analyze similar technologies in the market. 
  • Map research and industry trends. 
  • Shortlist potential private sector companies for technology transfer. 

3.Followed our proprietary “Advancing Innovation Framework” in technology management to facilitate technology licensing.

Project outcomes – commercialization success for public research investments  

In order to augment translational research and product commercialization, Sathguru recommended ISCB: 

  1. Pursue technologies that are in close proximity to the translational phase of product development. 
  2. License technologies to private sector that has capacity for translational research and a mandate for product commercialization. 
  3. Follow a novel technology auction mechanism and conduct India’s first competitive technology auction to private sector and facilitate functional partnerships for product development and commercialization. 

Sathguru’s “advancing innovation” approach through public-private partnership model enabled ISCB to emerge as one of India’s first program to have showcased technologies to the private sector and licensed them through an auction model.  With this pioneering approach to technology licensor, ISCB was able to establish a replicable model of commercialization of research that is publicly funded. 


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Creating a commercialization pathway – transferring technologies from public to private sector

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