2019 BRiDGE RFA for Expertise and Space in the Chesterfield Building [Duke Internal Funding]

Funding Agency:
Duke University

The Bioengineering Research initiative to Develop Global Entrepreneurs (BRiDGE) is made possible by a philanthropic gift to the Pratt School of Engineering and additional funds from the Pratt School of Engineering and the Department of Biomedical Engineering (BME) at Duke University. 

BRiDGE engages Duke  faculty,  post-doctoral fellows and students to support the launch of new companies (NewCos) with the goal of developing a vibrant  entrepreneurial ecosystem.

The BRiDGE provides: 

1)    Physical infrastructure: a total space of about 2,000 sq. ft. has been allocated in the Chesterfield building in downtown Durham.

2)    Intellectual expertise: training in creating business plans will be provided in partnership with the Director of Entrepreneurship at Duke Engineering, William Walker.

3)    Educational program: hands on learning via summer internship opportunities in the NewCos located in BRiDGE for Master of Science (MS) and Master of Engineering (MEng) students in BME and the department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science (MEMS).

This initiative aims to achieve the following goals:

  1. Accelerate the development of Duke spin out companies by positioning them for equity investment by venture capital and angel investors.
  2. Accelerate technology development to enable strategic partnering with pharmaceutical, medical device, or diagnostics companies.
  3. Increase the odds of successful commercialization by combining the scientific rigor of academic inventors with the expertise of seasoned product development mentors.
  4. Provide a blueprint for commercialization of biomedical discoveries and technologies, and disseminate and export this model to other institutions.

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis.

Selected NewCos will enter into an up to 11-month license agreement with an option to renew for up to a total of three years. The current cycle goes from January 1st to November 30th, 2019. 

Agency Website

Eligibility Requirements

  • Applicants must be NewCo founders. Founders include holders of common stock issued prior to licensing (ie. founder’s stock) reflecting their contribution to the invention or any named contributor on an IDF licensed to the NewCo. Employees of a company who have been or will be granted stock compensation as part of their employment must meet the prior criterion in order to be considered founders.
  • Applicant must be the NewCo founder who satisfies one of the following requirements:
    • Duke faculty 
    • Duke post-doctoral fellow
    • Duke graduate or undergraduate student
  • Established NewCo
  • A license or option from Duke, or proof of ongoing negotiations
  • Proof of funding to cover occupancy costs (i.e. VC/angel investment, awarded grant or with fundable score)

Funding Type



Grad/Prof Students
Post Doctoral Fellows


Engineering and Physical Sciences
Medical - Basic Science
Medical - Translational