IU Ventures, formerly the Indiana University Research and Technology Corporation, has announced new programs designed to foster connections among investors, IU faculty, students and entrepreneurs throughout the global IU community to support, invest in and grow innovative new enterprises with IU affiliations.
In the past, IU Ventures had a broad engagement focus, dealing with both entrepreneurial ventures and technology transfer on behalf of Indiana University. With the launch of the IU Philanthropic Venture Fund, The Quarry and now the IU Angel Network, IU Ventures is fully dedicated to serving as a connector for IU faculty and students and IU-affiliated entrepreneurs, investors, business leaders and donors in order to advance products and ideas that have market potential.
“Our mission is to help our faculty, students, staff and alums to be able to take their innovative ideas and create a real impact on people around the globe,” said Anthony T. Armstrong, president and CEO of IU Ventures. “We have almost 700,000 IU alums around the world. What an immense resource that is — the expertise, the networking, the talent, the financial resources.
“We want to be a connector and a catalyst of this resource to help foster continued innovation from members of the IU community who can make real, positive impact on the state, nation and world.”
This announcement comes at the start of celebrations for the Indiana University Bicentennial and serves as an extension of IU’s Bicentennial Strategic Plan goal for the application of knowledge and discovery to advance the quality of life and economy of the state, the region and the world.
“We have traditionally focused on ways that IU can contribute to the economic vitality of Indiana,” said Bill Stephan, IU vice president for government relations and economic engagement. “Specifically in this area, it’s ensuring that our intellectual property and innovations that have market capabilities move forward more effectively and efficiently. We want to build and grow startup businesses that will contribute to the economic landscape of the state.”
Harry Gonso, a member of the IU Board of Trustees and the IU Ventures board, believes this marks an exciting new way for IU alumni to engage with their alma mater. “There are a lot of people out there who, like me, have a deep love for Indiana University. We are offering an opportunity to contribute in a way that’s different from simply writing a check. Individuals can help young people, help businesses and see that their involvement has a direct impact.”
IU Ventures currently offers three programs:
- The Indiana University Philanthropic Venture Fund, managed by IU Ventures Executive Director Teri Willey, invests gifts from donors in high-potential startup companies and translates returns into additional investments in IU-affiliated startups through the ever-growing fund.
- The Quarry, managed by IU Ventures Associate Vice President Jason Whitney, seeks to engage IU faculty and help them explore options for commercializing their research and intellectual property.
- The IU Angel Network, organized by IU Ventures Executive in Residence Tedd Green, offers accredited investors the opportunity to network and invest in a curated selection of IU-affiliated startups.