Proteus: Kick-Starting the Road to Commercialization

on March 9, 2017

Taking an innovative technology from bench top to bedside takes more than just a good idea – ask any entrepreneur. It takes the right team, mentors, funding and a whole lot of hustle!

On Thursday, March 2nd, the six finalists for the second annual Proteus Innovation Competition took the stage to prove that they had just that.

The journey for these six teams started four months ago where they, along with 33 other teams, entered for their chance to win $7,500. The ask was simple – find a viable commercialization path for one of three technologies. After two stages, the teams were narrowed down from 39 to 6 and all that stood between them and the prize money was the Live Pitch Finale.

In front of an audience of 110 people, each team had five minutes to pitch their plan for either the Mirror Box for Lower-Extremity Therapy, the Hand-Held Breast Scanner or the Cloud-Based Data Collection App.

With representatives from industry, the local research institutions and the community in the room, each team had to convince a panel of esteemed judges that they had the best commercialization plan – it wasn’t easy.

The panel, made up of Karen Townsend, an award winning patent lawyer; Bernard Lim, a successful med-tech entrepreneur; and Martin Croteau, an experienced entrepreneur coach and mentor, did not go easy on the teams. With questions around IP protection, go-to-market strategy and competitive advantages, the teams were put to the test to see if they had the expertise to make this plan a reality.

After six great pitches and much deliberation, the winning teams for each technology were selected.

The Medical Innovation Fellows, made up of Dr. Esther Lau, Dr. Ashley Hannon, and Dr. Solmaz Karamdoust, took home the prize for their plan to take the Mirror Box Lower-Extremity Therapy to market.

For the Cloud-Based Data Collection App, Team Apex came out on top making Alexander Moszczynski, Andrew Kope, and Patrick McCunnn Proteus Champions.

Finally, Team E-Palp, made up of Tomi Nano, Justin Michael, Maya Kumar and Terenz Escartin, won for their Handheld Breast-Scanner Technology commercialization strategy.

Each team took home the title of Proteus Champion and a cheque for $7,500. But, they left with a lot more than that. Through the competition, the teams learned valuable commercialization skills, connected with mentors, and experienced the hustle needed to be a success.

With support from amazing sponsors and partners like Synaptive Medical, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, WORLDiscoveries, TechAlliance, Propel, Leap Junction and the Western Research Parks, these teams have innovative ideas, passionate individuals, and the community support needed to make their plan a reality.

To learn more about the Proteus Innovation Competition and how you can get involved next year check out their website!

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