We have recently started profiling commercialisation professionals from across the country in each newsletter and in this issue we meet Graeme Anderson. Graeme is the business development and commercialisation manager for Landcare research and is working to help the Landcare team to commercialise their research.
How did you get into this area of work and where did you begin your career?
In 1992 I worked with a scientist at MAF who was more interested in making pet food than doing science. Many a weekend was spent using autoclaves for off the record canning jobs and the results were unspectacular. Looking back I guess I was cursed with achieving early.
Tell us about some exciting projects you have been involved with.
Precision Irrigation is our top runner at the moment, smart placement of water to fit crop needs.
There has been a $9 million dollar capital raise in the US by our Israeli licensee who propelled this, honestly if it was left up to us at this end of the world it would be going nowhere fast.
I'm also pretty excited about mycoprotein, protein from fungi with the hyphae providing texture, its game on.
I love research commercialisation because….
Innovation without improving some fundamental human need isn't much more than toying around, I have to say I'm usually disappointed at any list of top ten tech growth companies based on some ephemeral trend of the moment.
Hence I rate medical innovation over gaming. It’s largely all about incremental change too, forget the huge entrant from left field, too hard.
What one thing could be done to improve commercialisation in New Zealand?
Courting the big investor, office work and hope only gets you so far.
What is your favourite quote?
"Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future." Bohr et al..
What technology would you love to have been involved with over the past 10 years?
Well I think the wheel has had its day, I'm going in big on a return to the sledge. Fits right in with global cooling, send money for an early stake now.
If you were a Christmas decoration, which one would you be and why?
A reindeer, those antlers would be handy.