Intellectual Property, Commercialisation and Consultancy

Bangor University is committed to growing entrepreneurial activity amongst its academic community and actively supports such activity by directing it into the most appropriate domain whether it be the filing, licencing or assignment of a patent; the formation of a Spin-out Company, or the provision of consultancy services.

The strategy and policy framework in this domain is managed for the University by the IP and Commercialisation Panel, the terms of reference for which can be found at here (IP Panel ToR). The University’s position on these matters is captured in the Bangor University Commercialisation / IP Strategy. Operational responsibility for this area sits with REO’s Commercialisation and Consultancy Manager, Gareth Mayhead (gmayhead@bangor.ac.uk / 8847).

As a knowledge based organisation Intellectual Property (IP) is important for the University and REO’s role is to manage IP to realise maximum impact for the institution. The current policy was revised in Jan 2013 and is shared with Aberystwyth University. (see below)

If you make a discovery or invention, which may have commercial value then it is critical you contact the Research and Enterprise Office to discuss the appropriate next steps. A copy of our standard disclosure form is available below. We may undertake some initial technical and commercial feasibility analysis of the disclosure, which may result in in the University filing a patent application with the staff member named as an inventor. Following the initial patent application it is expected that within one year the University makes good progress to either a license or assign the technology to a commercial partner.

As an incentive to staff the policy details a revenue sharing arrangement to fairly distribute profits for commercial transactions.

Key Documents & Information

Whilst the University’s preferred means of commercialising intellectual property is by means of licensing or assigning technologies to commercial partners, in some instances the most appropriate route to take forward the commercial development of an idea maybe the establishment of a spin-out company. The Research and Enterprise Office oversees the spin-out process and contact Gareth Mayhead, Commercialisation and Consultancy Manager (gmayhead@bangor.ac.uk / 8847) to discuss further.

In recent years the University has spun out several companies which are at different levels of development. These include:

LML (Laser Micro-Machining Ltd)
Naturiol Ltd
Diagnostig Ltd
IrysTec Inc
Suprex Ltd

The University’s business and investment model varies considerably across different areas but always requires that a significant amount of time, effort and potentially money is invested in the company by the ‘inventor/originator’. Details of this approach and further guidance is provided in the document A Practical Guide to Bangor University Spinout Company Formation which is available from the Commercialisation and Consultancy Manager (contact details above)

The University actively supports Consultancy by staff in order to promote knowledge transfer, staff development and additional income for the University and members of staff. The current policy was revised in Jan 2014 and is shared with Aberystwyth University.

Joint Bangor University/Aberystwyth University Consultancy Policy

The Research and Enterprise Office is responsible for implementing the Consultancy policy and in the first instance contact Gareth Mayhead, Commercialisation and Consultancy Manager (gmayhead@bangor.ac.uk / 8847).

Confidentiality Agreements

Confidential Disclosure Agreements (CDAs), also known as Non-disclosure Agreements (NDAs) are often used to protect confidential information belonging to the University or external organisations. They are commonly used legal documents and help to protect the University’s Intellectual Property and should be used when sharing information with external organisation particularly in initial discussions.

A copy of the Bangor template and guidelines is available here. The Research and Enterprise Office manages CDAs overseen by Gareth Mayhead, Commercialisation and Consultancy Manager (gmayhead@bangor.ac.uk / 8847) the University’s authorised signatory for CDAs. Please note that staff member are not able to sign these documents on behalf of the University.

Material Transfer Agreements

In the same way as a CDA gives early protection to your IP in any confidential discussion with a third party individual or organisation a Material Transfer Agreement provides similar legal protection to any transfer of research materials between the University and a third party. These are normally used where researchers are transferring or sharing research materials/samples with other researchers solely for research purposes. They are intended to provide clarity on the respective rights of both the provider and the recipient, not just for the materials transferred but potentially for other new material derived from the original.

In both cases (CDAs and MTAs), not only do you need to ensure that your position and that of the University is protected by appropriate usage, you also need to be aware of any requirements and obligations placed on you by signing up to a third party’s CDA or MTA. Although, caution is advised you should understand that a third party requirement for such agreement is absolutely normal and simply represents a competent professional approach by the third party.

The Research and Enterprise Office manages MTAs overseen by Gareth Mayhead, Commercialisation and Consultancy Manager (gmayhead@bangor.ac.uk / 8847) the University’s authorised signatory for MTAs. Please note that staff member are not able to sign these documents on behalf of the University.