Thursday, August 13, 2009

Need an Antidote to SBIR Malaise?

I've about had it with our Congress. This current health care turmoil has everyone in a frenzy. And it's all so familiar. Partisan politics is more important than anything else. It's OK to selectively stifle dissent. Special interests rule. Sigh.... The problem is the health care stakes are so high SBIR is fixin' to get lost in the shuffle again. I'm beginning to not care. Isn't that sad? Maybe I've got SBIR Malaise.

Yes, they'll probably arrive at some sort of SBIR Reauthorization compromise, arranged at the last minute by overworked and harried staffers, who are truly doing their best. But will what results be in the best interest of small business? Sure! And if you believe that, I have a bridge to sell you.

So it's time to move on and talk about something useful. Deal flow that moves technology to commercialization. An antidote to the malaise.

There's an annual event called the World's Best Technologies Showcase. It's been held in Arlington, Texas since 2004. WBT2010 will be held on March 16-17, 2010. The Center for Innovation at Arlington (CIA) serves as the host organization for it now. I proudly serve as the CIA's Business Coach (can you see that quoted out of context?).

Arizona based Development Capital Networks (DCN) organizes and puts on the event. Here's what they're saying about it...

While the WBT has evolved from its beginnings in 2002 in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, the mission has remained clear - the WBT is the premier event to see the world's best vetted and mentored deal flow ready for the marketplace. In the past seven years the WBTshowcase has worked with over 470 emerging companies and technologies transitioning from the lab, the university, and yes even the garage, to the marketplace. If you are ready to expose your research or technology to investors, licensees, and commercialization partners the WBT is the must attend event.

We are often asked, "What is the WBT difference?" Simple, the WBT serves as a partner on your path to commercialization. The competitive selection process is designed to give each applicant feedback on their commercialization opportunity from investors and licensees. Each selected presenter works with a two person mentor team in the weeks leading up to the event walking away with a concise 6-minute investor/licensee oriented presentation and perhaps meets a strategic partner or two along the way. The two day event provides each pre-prepped selected presenter with a forum to showcase their emerging research or company directly to investors, licensees, and strategic partners.

The WBT is not designed to showcase technology for technology's sake but to offer a path to the marketplace. The Showcase represents the best vetted emerging technology from around the globe, prepped and ready for business. There is no cost to apply and receive feedback on your commercialization opportunity from investors and licensees. Apply before September 14th and you will receive feedback on your application, which you can then resubmit before the final review by the screening panelists.

Want to learn more about the WBT? Visit or contact DCN's Event Director Amanda Radovic (; 480.477.6408).

This is a first class event with international participation. Any SBIR funded company should consider being showcased at WBT2010 for moving to commercialization.

So check it out.

SBIR isn't the only game in town. Good thing.

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