Accelerator Program

The WARF Accelerator Program speeds commercialization of UW–Madison discoveries patented by WARF. Our program provides expert advice from seasoned business mentors known as Catalysts and targeted funding.

The purpose of the program is to help inventions achieve developmental milestones and advance to the marketplace. For a summary of the exciting discoveries that have been selected, please see WARF Accelerator projects.

A unique asset of the Accelerator Program is our exceptional team of Catalysts on hand to guide inventions toward commercial success and real-world impact. Our Catalysts are chosen from a wide range of industries and fields including startups, Fortune 100 companies and the investment community. Many are highly successful UW–Madison alumni or leaders with strong ties to Wisconsin. They work closely with WARF staff to select the most promising discoveries and help investigators reach their commercial goals.

Accelerator support has helped inventors develop prototypes, understand markets, determine the requirements of potential customers, identify industry collaborators and attract federal funding for translational development. Participation in the program can spark the interest of investors, who see our support as an early validation of commercial potential. Even projects that do not receive Accelerator funding have benefited from the expert guidance of our team.

The WARF Accelerator Program targets five promising markets:
  • Biopharmaceuticals
  • Clean technology
  • Computer sciences and information technology
  • Food science
  • Medical devices and in vitro diagnostics
We selected these markets based upon:
  • UW–Madison's proven world-class research capabilities and strong portfolio of patents in these areas;
  • The availability of relevant industry expertise from our Catalysts; and
  • The potential for growth in these markets as indicated by investor and private-sector company interest, new product introductions and new company formations.
We invite you to learn more about the WARF Accelerator Program through our newsletter, Accelerator Pipeline. Our team welcomes the opportunity to answer questions and provide further information about this exciting initiative.