Evolution of the Screening Metaphor: Project, Product, or Platform?


There are multiple options or paths to the market to be considered when developing the commercialization strategy for translating a technology or invention into an innovation. We present a very simple screening methodology that may be applied to facilitate a quick, but structured approach for the entrepreneur to identify which option or options may be most viable to create, deliver and capture value in potential markets. We construct the metaphors “project, product, or platform” to categorize three potential commercialization pathways to reach the market. Projects are best pursued with commercial partners via licensing arrangements. Products may be pursued using a research and development company business model. Platform is intended to signify creation and growth of a lasting, scalable organization intended to develop and bring multiple disruptive or transformative innovations to market. Which path to the marketplace is appropriate, or even possible will depend on a number of factors. These include: the magnitude of value being created for the market; the competitive set; and, the uniqueness of the solution and its sustainable, competitive advantage that can be created. It is also necessary to determine whether the value captured by the business model that may be constructed could generate sufficient profitability to balance the commercialization risks, while meeting the goals and objectives of the founders, investors and partners over an appropriate time line.

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