Industry Licensing Process

Our licensing process is designed to achieve two goals: to bring additional research funding to the UW System through licensing income, and to put innovations developed by Universities of Wisconsin faculty, staff and students to work for the maximum benefit of the economy and society.

Below we provide brief descriptions of our standard Licensing, Option and Sponsor Option Agreements.

In the sidebar to the right, you will find information around our most frequently used agreements including, our standard CDA, MTA and IIAs.

License Agreements

A license agreement gives you (the Licensee) the ability to use WiSys' rights under its intellectual property for a technology, in order to develop, make, use or sell that technology in a specified field and territory. Standard terms include:

  • A License Fee - This fee is paid at the time the license agreement is signed and depends on the market value of the technology.
  • Patent Reimbursement - These fees reflect the costs that WiSys has incurred or will incur to patent the technology.
  • Development Plan and Reporting - Often, WiSys technologies are early-stage and will require further development. When further development work is needed, we often require the licensee to submit a development plan and quarterly development reports to monitor progress. In some cases, milestones may be specified along with appropriate milestone payments. These help reduce initial license fees on high-risk projects since these milestone payments are only made if development continues successfully.
  • Royalties - These fees are paid when products using the technology are sold. They may be calculated on a percentage-of-sales or fee-per-unit basis, depending on the circumstances.
  • Minimum Royalty - WiSys often requires a minimum royalty following the conclusion of any further development work which may have been required. This is set at a relatively low amount compared to the expected royalties and is designed to encourage continued active marketing of the technology.

Option and Sponsor Option Agreements

Option and Sponsor Option Agreements are often utilized before the signing of an actual License Agreement. These agreements give the company the right to evaluate a technology for a limited period of time to ascertain its practicality and value.

During the option period, the company has an exclusive option to take a commercial license to the technology in question. A one-time fee is typically charged due to the exclusive nature of the option.

For inventions that may be made during the course of Universities of Wisconsin sponsored research, the agreement is called a sponsor option agreement.