Small and Medium-sized Entrepreneurship (SME), New Technology-Based Firms (NTBF), spin-off, economically depressed area, innovation process
The aim of this paper is to discuss the spin-off opportunities from research at the Technical University of Liberec. For the successful transfer of technology it is better to cooperate with small firms. Four kinds of small firms are identified: specialized suppliers (combining technologies to meet users´ needs); suppliers-dominated (integration and adaptation of innovations by suppliers); superstars (successful exploitation of major invention); NTBFs - New technology-based firms (privatizing academic research). This article directly focuses on the opportunities which exist for NTBFs to commercialize/privatize academic research.NTBF spin-offs tend to cluster around their respective incubator organizations, they are forming regional networks of expertise and bringing profit to the regional economy and society as a whole. There is relatively little information on the characteristics of the „Academic entrepreneur“. Entre-preneurs, academic or otherwise, require a supportive environment.There are two levels of analysis of the university environment, the formal institutional rules, poli-cies and structures, and the local norms of the university:• specific guidelines on the use of university facilities, staff a students and intellectual property rights;• specific guidelines for the dual employment of scientist-entrepreneurs;• specific guidelines and mechanisms for the problems with financial ownership between the university and the venture.It was identified a number of common stages of development with different capabilities, resou-rces and support:• research phase;• opportunity framing phase;• pre-organization phase;• re-orientation phase;• sustainable returns phase.The business knowledge and expertise of management and consequent skills are very important.