Dimien LLC was previously awarded the highly competitive and prestigious National Science Foundation (NSF) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I grant for commercialization of a dynamic metal oxide based material. As part of the NSF SBIR program, the NSF matches 50 cents on the dollar for third-party investment. Due to angel investment, Dimien was able to take full advantage of the supplemental NSF SBIR funding and was recently awarded the NSF SBIR Phase IB grant.
Dimien LLC was awarded the highly competitive and prestigious National Science Foundation (NSF) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I grant for commercialization of a dynamic metal oxide based material. The award totaling $150,000 dollars will focus on a market driven commercialization approach, based off of the NSF’s I-Corps curriculum. Dan Miner of Buffalo Business First reported on Dimien’s success in a press release last week, entitled “This UB Panasci winner reaping benefits.”
The prestigious National Science Foundation Innovation Corps award enables graduate students, professors, and seasoned entrepreneurs/business professionals to come together for 7 weeks and explore a business curriculum with the primary goal of fostering entrepreneurship. Based on the Steve Blank’s The Startup Owner’s Manual and the Osterwalder’s Business Model Canvas developed by Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur in Business Model Generation, the curriculum just doesn’t nudge scientists but forces them out of their comfy laboratories into customer interviews. The reiterative process builds hypothesis that are re-tested by talking to potential customers – this is known as customer discovery and customer validation.
A team composed of Brian Schultz (entrepreneurial lead), Sarbajit Banerjee (principle investigator), and Martin Casstevens (business mentor) completed the rigorous course with more than 106 in-person customer interviews including several Fortune 500 companies. The course gave Dimien a new perspective on its customer clientele enabling our team to more directly address the needs of consumers.
After Team Dimien took home 1st place at the Panasci TEC held at the University at Buffalo, Brian Schultz traveled to Albany to compete at the state level for over $500,000 in cash and prizes in the NYS Business Plan Competition. In order to qualify for “states” we out-pitched our competition in Western New York – our Regional Economic Development Council zone. We swept the local competition in our Energy and Sustainability track to qualify for states.
In Albany, each team was scored by 5 well-qualified and experienced judges in a head-to-head style competition. Dimien competed in the Energy and Sustainability track and left with a 2nd place finish collecting $5,000 in cash.
University at Buffalo (UB) students took 1st place at the Henry A. Panasci Jr. Technology Entrepreneurship Competition (TEC) created by the UB School of Management, the UB Office of Science, Technology Transfer, and Economic Outreach (STOR), and the Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership (CEL). Team Dimien composed of Brian Schultz, Ann Brozek, and Peter Marley won more than $60,000 in cash and prizes for their plan to manufacturer a material coating that can regulate heat from the sun in any building creating “smart” windows. Read the full story in the UB School of Management Newsroom.