About the WBT

WBT09 Presenter - Air Force Research Lab

WBT2010 Award Winners
Platinum: Orthogonal
Astronix Research
Silver: FibeRio

Over 10 years of research shows that one in three WBT presenters goes on to license, secure venture funding, or sell their IP outright.

  • The most diversified pipeline of market ready innovations
  • Hands on, deal driven
  • Access to global innovation leaders

What began as an idea in early 2002, the WBT Innovation Marketplace has emerged as the nation's premier event showcasing the largest collection of vetted and mentored companies and technologies emanating from top universities, labs, research institutions, and the private sector from across the country and around the globe.

The WBT Innovation Marketplace (WBT) represents the collaborative, year-long effort of investors, licensees, and tech commercialization professionals. The WBT is deal-focused and diverse, showcasing companies and technologies that vary by geography, funding source, and type of research institution. Participating technologies, each supported by private funding, federal R&D grants or both. technologies are selected by - and presented to - over 100 seasoned venture investors and Fortune 500 licensing scouts representing a variety of industries.


Since its inception in 2002 the WBT Innovation Marketplace has presented over 810 emerging companies and technologies representing 49 states and 25 countries. To date WBT presenters have gone on to raise nearly $1 Billion in early and seed stage funding and licensing. These figures do not consider subsequent federal R&D grants or sources of other government, state, local grant funding, or licensing agreements of undisclosed amounts.

Close to $1 Billion in “next round” capital (includes acquisitions) including:

  • Life Science - $399 MM
  • IT and Software - $299 MM
  • Energy - $175 MM
  • Advanced Materials - $ 94 MM

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The Process

Applicants are screened by a national panel of seed investors, venture capitalists and corporate licensing executives. Up to eighty (80) presenters are chosen to make a 6-minute presentation. In the weeks leading up to the WBT Marketplace presenters are provided guidance on their 6-minute presentations and groomed by individually assembled mentor teams comprised of seasoned experts. All presenters are also eligible to compete for a "Innovation Marketplace Award " where investors and licensing scouts ultimately select the most promising technologies in each of the 5 designated industry sectors. Presenting technologies represent a convergence of industry sectors including Lifescience, Materials Science, Energy, Information Technology and Nano

Who participates

Each WBT brings together the venture capital community, corporate licensees, angel investors, state seed managers, federal lab researchers, university researchers, tech transfer and licensing professionals and international trade and technology organizations from around the nation and the globe.
WBT is one of the few events that bring together such a comprehensive group of investors, innovators, and deal flow.

Prospective presenters can be broadly divided into two groups - actual startup companies and pure technologies (i.e. institutions representing researchers still in the lab.) Each candidate is seeking seed capital, venture capital, corporate licensing partners, or a strategic partner.

WBT presenters must demonstrate that their technology has the potential to form the basis for high growth commercial enterprise or be easily licensed to solve a specific market problem.

Selected technologies are typically supported by a number of state funding programs, angel capital, seed funds and a variety of federal R&D programs.
    Close to market
    Few barriers remaining to commercial application

    First in Space
    Having the potential to give rise to a whole new industry

    Platform Technology
    Spawn Many products
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Past Sponsors