Written by Lori A. Wilson
How do you validate that your technology has value? How do you calculate the value to you? These are a couple of the questions Beth Zotter, from Cyclotron Road, addressed in her talk Monday evening. She shared observations and tips from her experience working with materials science entrepreneurs. Her discussion was aimed toward scientists interested in developing commercial products with new materials. Getting to market requires establishing a clear connection between the material and its value proposition—in words, numbers, and dollars.
“A catalyst could increase the rate of production and yield. A reduction of capital cost or a new technology could increase the rate of product and reduce cost,” Zotter said.
She emphasized that one of the most important things to do in the beginning is cost modeling. “What is the value to you? Do the starter materials in your product cost more than what you want to sell it for? If you don’t do these calculations early, you could end up in debt.”
Every year, Cyclotron Road recruits a cohort of entrepreneurial scientists and engineers from around the world to join them, where they offer support as the scientists advance a project that is focused on a new technology concept with the potential for global impact. The goal of Cyclotron Road is to empower innovators to mature their ideas until they align with a suitable commercial partner to take their technology to scale.
“Getting the product into the infrastructure of our world is a measure of our success. Getting products on a smart track,” Zotter said.