This week the country celebrates Minority Enterprise Development Week, recognizing the minority-owned firms who are pumping over one trillion dollars into our economy each year and employing nearly six million Americans.
The Office of Economic Impact and Diversity is working to empower minority entrepreneurs by connecting them with technology transfer opportunities, cutting red tape and sharing resources for minority owned businesses interested in working with our nation’s crown jewels of innovation, the national laboratories. The Agreements for Commercializing Technology structure that was established in 2011 allows companies and the National Laboratories to specialize arrangements to facilitate moving technology into the marketplace as quickly as possible.
Quick transfer of Department of Energy technology and patents to small businesses helps spur job creation and economic investment – a recent study notes that for every technology transfer agreement studied, an average of 26 jobs were created with salaries around $80,000 a year and $5.4 million of economic growth.
At the Energy Innovation Portal, the Department’s hub for technology transfer resources, minority owned firms and other businesses can browse through the patents and applications, look at popular and new trending technologies like plant pathogen resistance and a solar glare hazard analysis tool, explore a visual patent search, sign up for email updates, and view success stories of technology transfer here at the Department.
These stories are numerous - in fiscal year 2012 alone there were:
- 3,300 active income-bearing license agreements created
- 900 patents filed
- 26 companies started based on Department of Energy technology