emmtrix Technologies: Patent Negotiations in High-Tech Academic Spinoffs
In May 2016, three scientists from Germany's Karlsruhe Institute of Technology were preparing for a meeting with several managers from the institute's technology transfer department. The three scientists were planning to commercialize a new technology they had created, and hoped to use their invention to launch a new company as a spinoff from their work at the institute. However, because the scientists had created the technology while working at the institute, the technology was legally owned by the institute. The focus of their meeting with the institute's management was (1) to plan for the protection of their invention by registering relevant patents and (2) to discuss the terms for a suitable agreement between both parties. The scientists wanted to clarify how they might be able to use the technology to launch their spinoff company. Specifically, they were eager to determine their rights to the patents that would be registered for their intellectual property. They hoped the meeting would clarify any conflicts between the interests of the scientists and those of the university, and would determine the party responsible for costs related to protecting the intellectual property. Frederik J. Riar is affiliated with Karlsruher Institut f r Technologie. Carsten C. Guderian is affiliated with Friedrich-Alexander-Universit t Erlangen-N rnberg. Peter M. Bican is affiliated with Friedrich-Alexander-Universit t Erlangen-N rnberg.