‘Invention to Venture’ Conference to Host U.S. Patent Director

Contact: Deb Neuman, (207) 866-6535; Renee Kelly, (207) 581-1401

ORONO — A University of Maine conference scheduled Nov. 10 for business people and prospective entrepreneurs to learn more about innovating and capitalizing on great new ideas will include a keynote address by David Kappos, director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in Washington, D.C.

The conference, “Invention to Venture: Maine 2010,” from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Black Bear Inn Conference Center in Orono is sponsored by the Target Technology Incubator and the UMaine Foster Center for Student Innovation in partnership with the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance. The conference will focus on encouraging students, individuals, businesses and the university community to invent, innovate and commercialize new ideas and technologies.

Featuring both basic and advanced workshops focused on technology entrepreneurship, invention and innovation, the conference will provide a rare opportunity to bring together experts in innovation and invention with individuals and businesses that can benefit from their expertise.

Highlights of the daylong event include:

Presentations about venture capital, marketing, manufacturing, intellectual property, business plans, and related topics;
Luncheon panel of inventors sharing their real life experiences and invention journey;

Opportunities to meet with representatives from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and the Maine Patent Program to learn about the patent process;

Pitch competition featuring an expert panel of judges with a $2,500 cash prize for the best pitch and a special~Fusion Bangor award for one student or student team of $500;

And a resource area featuring exhibits and information from organizations that provide support services for inventors and innovators.

Conference fees are $10 for students, $25 for faculty members and staff and $50 for members of the business community and all others. Participants can register online here, where more information, including a schedule of events, speaker biographies and conference sponsors and supporters, is available.