One-Stop Venture Capital Shop
Gary Keller [Photo: Matt Dean]
Florida Trend: All the state universities have technology transfer offices. Why is the institute necessary?
Gary Keller: The institute is an initiative by the state to provide a one-stop shop for venture capitalists who are looking for the opportunity to invest in Florida startups, for entrepreneurs seeking their next startup opportunity, as a way to make it very easy to support putting together the critical pieces to build early-stage technology companies in fulfillment of the state’s plan to diversify the economy.
FT: Why Boca?
GK: The legislation stipulates the institute will be based in south Florida. It was seen that this would be a desirable place where people would want to come as a first opportunity to look at commercial opportunities available.
FT: Progress so far?
GK: We have established the institute’s office in the FAU research park. We have established a board of directors. We have engaged our first entrepreneur, Navroze Mehta from MDI Partners, in developing commercialization plans for two medical technologies out of FAU. Florida has extraordinarily talented and experienced people that have the ability to make their efforts and their investments bear fruit in their own back yards.