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When David Met Goliath—the Art of Corporate Partnering for Nanotechnology Startups
Volume 2, Issue 1

Mike Moradi, SouthWest NanoTechnologies, Venture Development Associates

Because nanoscale materials and devices are primarily enabling technologies, most start-ups are seeking to form corporate partnerships. While there are significant risks inherent in corporate partnering, there are also substantial gains that can be realized if the right strategies are taken. In this article, entrepreneur Mike Moradi outlines and explains the steps that nanotechnology startups can use to achieve rapid growth and viability through strategic partnerships. Specifically, start-ups should follow six basic steps in forming and maintaining partnerships: (1) make a list of ideal partners; (2) identify and contact technical and business champions within the target organization; (3) demonstrate value to the project; (4) visit key members of the target corporation in person; (5) brazen the partnership through by striking a balance between good lawyering and excessive lawyering; and (6) manage the partnership productively.

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