Companies Contribute 15,767 Jobs, $ 755 Million to Utah Economy

The University of Utah is No. 1 in the country in starting companies based on university research for the second year in a row, according to an annual survey recently released by the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM).

The survey ranks U.S. universities and institutions on commercialization success, and in recent years, the U of Utah has climbed to the top, overtaking such schools as MIT, Columbia, Cal Tech and Johns Hopkins.

The newest survey measures fiscal year 2010. The U of Utah had 18 startups from July 1, 2009 to June 30, 2010, while MIT was second, with 17 new companies. Other top schools included Brigham Young University with 13, Columbia and Cornell with 12, Johns Hopkins and Purdue at 11 each, while Cal Tech, Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Michigan all had 10.

This achievement is again a testament not only to our world-class researchers and their innovative discoveries, but also to the university’s unique ability to deliver that life-changing technology to the people who need it most.” –  A. Lorris Betz interim president University of Utah.

Since the University launched its first startup, TerraTek, in 1970, it has followed up with more than 200 other startups based on research. 125 of these were founded in the past six years after the university restructured its commercialization efforts.

According to the university’s Bureau of Economic and Business Research 2010 economic impact study, U of Utah startups directly or indirectly accounted for 15,767 jobs, $ 754.5 million in personal income and $ 76.6 million in tax revenue in 2009.

The 2010 AUTM survey reports information collected from 183 institutions across the U.S – 155 universities, 27 hospitals and research institutions, and one third-party management company.

The Technology Commercialization Office (TCO) at the University of Utah is part of Technology Venture Development and manages the school’s intellectual property. That involves working closely with faculty inventors, filing patent applications, licensing technologies, finding commercial partners and helping support startup companies.

We have created a process around startups and commercialization that can be applied to all kinds of new companies, and we look forward to improving these things.” – Bryan Ritchie director TCO

The AUTM survey ranks institutions on many categories ranging from employees and expenditures to startups and patents. The U of Utah ranked high on many categories beyond startups. Additional highlights include:

• The University of Utah reported 287 active technology licenses in 2010. A technology license is required each time a company or individual wants to use a university technology. The national average was 210 for all institutions.

• The University of Utah collected 208 invention disclosures in 2010. An invention disclosure occurs when a faculty member reports an invention to the university. The national average was 113.

• The University of Utah secured 41 U.S. patents in 2010. The national average was 24.

The complete 2010 AUTM survey is available to news media by contacting Jodi Talley of AUTM at [email protected] or 847-559-0846, ext. 237. The public can purchase it at