"My colleague and I came to UCI Applied Innovation when we had little more than an idea and a vague game plan. At every step of the way I was amazed at how helpful and collaborative working with UCI was; you really get the feeling they’re invested in your success."

– Joe Rinehart
Associate Professor of Clinical Anesthesiology
Vice-Chair of Research for Anesthesiology
Founder, Sironis

The legal agreements to provide rights in UCI intellectual property (IP) to a company are handled by the Licensing Officers in the Invention Transfer Group (ITG). A faculty member and startup company can expect the following with regards to the licensing process:

1. A company must be formed. UCI will not license to an individual. The startup company must demonstrate that it has the resources to develop the product in a timely manner consistent with the stage of the technology. 

2. Under a license agreement, UCI will require the startup company to pay patent costs, licensing fees, and royalty on sales of a product, consistent with licensing practices for any other commercial entity. Financial terms of the license are based on comparable market rates, however UCI often accepts equity in order to help reduce initial fees for startup licenses. 

3. UCI will not negotiate with the faculty member or other UCI employee, therefore the startup company should find appropriate representation to negotiate with the Licensing Officer at ITG. This may be another person working for the startup who does not have a conflict with the university or it could be someone, such as an attorney, hired specifically to represent the startup company in the negotiation. 

4. The startup company will be treated similarly as any other university licensee. If the startup company fails to meet diligence provisions, make financial payments, or otherwise not meet its obligations under a license agreement, the company risks losing the license. 

The Licensing Officers at ITG complete several startup licenses every year and are well versed in working with startups. They utilize template agreements and can address areas of concern for the startup. Once the startup company is ready to discuss a license agreement, contact the Licensing Officer managing the technology of interest for an initial meeting.