Spin-out Review: Statement of Best Practice Adoption

University of Derby has substantively adopted best practice approaches which align with Recommendation 1 of the independent review of university spin-out companies, and will be working toward full adoption during the academic year 24/25.

University of Derby has an innovation-friendly policy environment that includes:

These policies provide a clear position on Intellectual Property Ownership, with associated procedures to support the disclosure, assessment and journey towards commercialisation.

The policies currently allow for a bespoke negotiation when agreeing equity stakes for a spin-out company. This pro-innovation approach takes every situation on its merits and delivers deals on market terms. The University has not, to date, formed a commercial spin-out company. However, we recognise the potential of this position to extend negotiation and times to deal completion.

Through the creation of increased guidance to support the formation of spin-out companies the University of Derby will seek to fully adopt Recommendation 1 of the spin-out review. This will be achieved through establishing a Task and Finish Working Group under the oversight of the Industry Engagement Group (a sub-committee of the University Innovation and Research Committee). Involving relevant stakeholders to create the Spin-Out Procedure. Expected outputs of this document include:

  1. guidance and terms for spin-out formation;
  2. efficient processes and timescales for spin-out approval decisions;
  3. guidance for founders to adopt equity distribution recognising the contributions towards originating IP, continued intellectual support, and rewards for those who provide considerable efforts in taking spin-outs forward;

The procedure will integrate appropriate best-practice from TenU’s University Spin-out Investment Terms (USIT) Guide.