August 21, 2012
The technology commercialization sector in Louisiana is alive and well and is not getting much attention these days, so I feel compelled to write this letter to provide some simple facts that The Advocate readers will enjoy.
The Louisiana Business & Technology Center at LSU is completing its 24th year as one of the nation’s most-successful business incubators and entrepreneurship program.
We have documented the saving or creation of over 9,000 jobs and our LBTC/LSU student incubator is working with student entrepreneurs on programs that will give them the opportunity to start and operate their own business while at LSU. This way, they will have created their own job, and upon graduation not interview and leave the state.
The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant program is a multibillion-dollar research grant program for small technology businesses. The LBTC at LSU handles this program for Louisiana and since 2008, we have assisted Louisiana businesses win $31.6 million of these awards from agencies such as the Department of Defense, National Science Foundation, National Cancer Institute, National Institute of Health and NASA.
Many of these companies are clients of the LBTC and are currently in residence or have graduated from our incubator at the LSU Innovation Park. For the size of our state and the dollars invested, we have done very well.
The tax credit enacted by the Louisiana Legislature has set Louisiana apart from many of our competing states and will allow us to continue to recruit top scientists and companies that can compete for and win these SBIR grants.
This needs to be continued so Louisiana can keep its edge.
These SBIR grants are solicited by federal agencies needing solutions, and a percentage of these grants must go to small businesses. The LBTC is pleased to announce that we have a strong number of capable entrepreneurs who have competed for and won these grants.
LSU and our state universities have played their role in this process by spinning out technology and licensing it to savvy entrepreneurs who can take it to the marketplace. Be assured that we have the bright young entrepreneurs and the experienced veteran entrepreneurs who can keep this trend moving in the right direction.
Louisiana Economic Development and Secretary Stephen Moret have invested in the LBTC to do this and it is paying off for Louisiana.
Charles F. D’Agostino, executive director
Louisiana Business & Technology Center and LSU Innovation Park