Manuel Palacín is the heart and soul of The Collider, standing in the programme since the very beginning. Thanks to his engineering background, Manuel has managed to connect with the TTOs and scientists to turn their potential into the market. To get a grasp of Manuel’s role at The Collider and his ideas about tech-transfer, make sure to read till the end.
Meet The Colliders!
How was the idea of The Collider born and how did you get involved in it?
I got involved in the Mobile World Capital Barcelona (MWCapital) in 2016 as a tech-transfer manager when The Collider did not exist as we know it today. At that time, all our team was focused on identifying the main stakeholders of the tech-transfer ecosystem (universities, research centres, researchers, projects…) and the synergies with the industry and the investor’s world.
The idea behind the programme was born at the beginning of 2017. After analysing different tech-transfer startups, we noticed that they didn’t get the optimal cruise speed mainly to the lack of previous entrepreneurial experience. At that time, we thought that we needed to change the traditional approach of starting tech-transfer ventures and we decided to create a programme that brought together scientific and industrial talent to lead deep-tech startups from ground 0.
Why does technological transfer matter to you?
I am a researcher at heart who’s found himself in the middle of the entrepreneurial world. As a representative of a public institution promoting knowledge-transfer initiatives, I think that tech-transfer is the instrument to build the bridge between science and business. The result is adding real value to society, not only through publications and proofs-of-concept but also real and tangible solutions with a direct impact on people’s lives and economy. To me, tech-transfer is a way-of-life, and a way to improve the cities of the future.
Which would you say is the added value of The Collider compared to other venture builders?
In short, the talent. We are a pioneering initiative that mixes business and tech profiles. Looking at The Collider candidates, you can easily notice how talented they are. On one hand, we welcome a wide range of profiles, from corporate businessmen and women to fundraising experts or serial entrepreneurs. On the other hand, we have extremely skilled researchers in deep-tech, not only from engineering backgrounds but also a vast variety of scientific profiles.
In addition, The Collider acts as a meeting point and leverages the potential of MWCapital in terms of networking. The Collider enables entrepreneurs to connect with high-profile corporations and investors to validate their business opportunity and assess them with fundraising.
How do you measure success in the program and why?
Our ultimate goal is to generate an optimal tech-transfer model that will promote as many research initiatives into the market as possible. We take into account quantitative KPIs such as the number of startups, the survival rate, the funding achieved, etc. But also we value qualitative indicators like mindset change in the research world or collateral alliances thanks to The Collider.
Finally, which are the major improvements in the current edition of The Collider?
We aim to position the programme as the major meeting point between the research and entrepreneurial worlds. Our ultimate goal is to bring value to all the stakeholders in the ecosystem and have a positive impact on society.
The main 3 pillars in the current edition of The Collider will be:
- Talent: the best and most talented people from the research, entrepreneurial and business world.
- Improved methodology: 6 months of formation and support from top-tier mentors and business experts.
- Networking: access to an vast pool of corporations and investors.