There are a number of ways to commercialise your opportunity with the two most common being a licence to an existing company or a licence to a newly formed spin out company.  We may also start a social enterprise depending on the nature of the opportunity. We can help you understand more about licensing.

Licensing the technology to an existing company that has the resources and track record of bringing similar opportunities to market is often the best way to maximise impact from your work. If we license your technology, you (and your School) may be able to benefit from any revenue paid to the University by the company as part of that licence as the University has a revenue sharing scheme.

Essential medicines

Note that the University of Bristol is committed to enabling and maximising benefits to society, government and industry, including in the developing world, that may arise from our research. Therefore, for some licenses the University's Essential medicines statement (PDF, 78kB) may be applicable.

COVID-19 response: The University of Bristol has signed on to AUTM’s COVID-19 Licensing Guidelines ( These state, in summary, that we will adopt a COVID-19 licensing strategy that facilitates rapid pandemic response by licensees and, where legally possible, will adopt time-limited, non-exclusive royalty-free licenses, in exchange for the licensees’ commitment to rapidly make and broadly distribute products and services to prevent, diagnose, treat and contain COVID-19 and protect healthcare workers during the pandemic.

Spin out a company

Spin out companies have become a very visible way of commercialising research opportunities. The University has a Policy on Spin Out Company formation (PDF, 364kB) that provides fair and equitable benefits to the researchers as well as fair return to the University. Becoming involved in a new business represents a serious time commitment and researchers need to ensure they understand what they are getting involved in.

Useful information


Intellectual property



Thinking of working with an external partner?



Relevant information will be recorded on a secure database for the purpose of managing commercialisation activity and in line with GDPR it is only held for as long as is needed.

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