Oak Ridge National Laboratory


News Release

Media Contact: Marty Goolsby ()
Communications and External Relations


Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Technology 2020 announce plan to create new companies

OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 12, 2000 — The Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and Technology 2020 have formed a partnership to help create more jobs in East Tennessee. Called the Center for Entrepreneurial Growth, the partnership will focus on taking technology developed at ORNL and using the technology to form new companies.

The new partnership was announced to area business leaders and public officials at a ceremony held at the Technology 2020 headquarters in Oak Ridge. ORNL Director Bill Madia called the partnership "an innovative way to use cutting-edge science at the lab to produce jobs and wealth for Tennessee."

"Our mission at ORNL is to produce great science that will benefit people's lives. What we are doing today is making it easier to move state-of-the-art technology from the laboratory to the marketplace," Madia said.

ORNL's partnership with Technology 2020 is part a commitment made last year by UT-Battelle, the lab's managing contractor, with the state of Tennessee to help support economic development in the region, Madia said.

The Center for Entrepreneurial Growth is housed at Technology 2020. The center is designed to create an environment in which scientists who develop technology have direct access to items such as planning help and access to capital needed to start a new company.

Technology 2020 Director Tom Rogers said, "Our region has some of the world's best science. What we have never done well is make it easy for scientists to develop their ideas in the marketplace."

Rogers said the center already is identifying ORNL technologies with commercial potential. In addition to one-on-one assistance, the center also will conduct monthly seminars, open to all ORNL employees, that feature different issues of forming and maintaining a new business.

As a signal of the partnership's potential, the ceremony announced the relationship with several client companies including Sarcon Microsystems, ImTek, TurboWave, NucSafe, Machine Kinetics Engineering Services Company and Digital Multimedia.

In addition to licensing technologies, UT-Battelle will provide financial support to the Center for Entrepreneurial Growth. During the next five years UT-Battelle will provide more than $1,000,000 that include funds from UT-Battelle's corporate fee and licensing revenues.

Today, UT-Battelle is providing $100,000 to establish a CEG Commercialization Fund that will be used to help commercialize ORNL technologies.

ORNL is managed by UT-Battelle for the Department of Energy. Technology 2020 is a public-private partnership established in 1993 to create an entrepreneurial environment by drawing on the information technology resources of the Knoxville-Oak Ridge region.