The Ecosystem: universities pitch founder-friendly plan for software spin-outs

28 May 2024 | News

A new UK guide tells universities to expect less equity and give founders room to align with the market

Photo credits: Vaughan Leiberum / Flickr

A UK blueprint for forming university software spin-outs with no underlying patents aims to define a landing zone for commercialisation agreements that is equally acceptable to universities, founders and potential investors, and makes the process of company formation smoother and faster.

On the contentious issue of equity, the guide recommends that universities take only a 5-10% stake in software spin-outs, rather than the 10-25% proposed for patent-based spin-outs. This recognises the lower input of intellectual property (IP) and other resources that universities tend to have in software spin-outs, and the speed at which software products get to market.

“The ability to agree…