From eye-tracking software to the manufacturing of high-performance components made of carbon and glass fiber up to innovative bicycle gear drives and electric walkers: under the supporting umbrella of the start-up initiative at the University of Stuttgart, over 500 founded companies and 2500 new, highly-qualified workplaces have been created in the last two decades. There were good reasons for the Technology Transfer Initiative (TTI GmbH), a subsidiary of the University of Stuttgart, to celebrate its 20-year anniversary with guests from politics, business and science on 18th June 2018.
In her welcoming speech on the anniversary event in the senate hall of the University of Stuttgart, Dr. Nicole Hoffmeister-Kraut, Economics Minister of the State of Baden-Württemberg, acknowledged the culture of entrepreneurial independence at the University of Stuttgart, that facilitates the step towards creating new enterprises and transferring scientific know-how in economic value creation. The minister said, “Start-ups create innovations, thus making an important contribution to the constant modernization of our economy. This applies all the more in times of digitalization. In order for Baden-Württemberg to keep up and also to be a strong location for business and employment in future, we are supporting founders on their path to success.“
The TTI Managing Director and Head of the Institute of Machine Components (IMA) at the University of Stuttgart, Professor Bernd Bertsche, underlined in his welcoming speech the goals of the initiative founded in 1998, “We want to promote the potential for start-up personalities and business ideas at the University of Stuttgart. The specific aim is to guide scientific curiosity and creativity in the development of sustainable products and services. In the past 20 years we have achieved a great deal in this way for founders with our TTI services.“
Professor Bertsche informed the invited guests about the services offered by TTI, ranging from consulting on business plans, coaching and financing with funding programs to procuring patrons and resources at the University of Stuttgart to setting up a transfer and founding enterprise and providing premises in the Technology Center of the university.
In his speech Professor Wolfram Ressel acknowledged TTI services for the university and stressed, “Through its activities TTI has made an important contribution to the entrepreneurial spirit that is palpable everywhere at the university today. We will be expanding these in future through special ranges of courses and a newly created professorship.“
The first Managing Director of TTI and emeritus for astronautics and space stations, Professor Ernst Messerschmid, gave an insight in his speech into the early years of the start-up initiative.
An alumnus, Michael Schmitz, Managing Partner of Pinion GmbH, and a current founder supported by TTI, Dr. Sven Benson, Head of TGU Candidum, reported on their experiences. At the end of the event Peter Heinke, Managing Director of TTI GmbH, gave an outlook for the next 20 years of TTI.