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My company developed a tool we have classified as OLAP-D, D because it has its own syntax to let the business user define the business meta data as formulas.

Published
  • September 01 2000, 1:00am EDT
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Q:  

My company developed a tool we have classified as OLAP-D, "D" because it has its own syntax to let the business user define the business meta data as formulas. We need to know who can support us to commercialize it.

  1. We would like to explore the possibility to sell all the rights.
  2. The second possibility is to sell it to audit companies, because it’s main use is as an administrative tool.
  3. The third is to sell it individually around the world.

A:  

Douglas Hackney’s Answer: First, you must understand that what you have is a technology, not a product. A product has documentation, technical support, a market position backed by a marketing strategy, advertising, brand awareness, sales channels, market partnerships, etc. To get from where you are to a "product" takes a lot of money. A typical software startup will burn through $15-25 million US dollars to get to the point where they have taken their core technology and turned it into a viable company with a "product." Both option #2 and #3 require you to have a real product. Unless you are prepared to set off down the road of a software startup (which will entail trading the majority of your company for the money required to achieve the goal), then you should focus on option #1.

If choose to pursue option #1, don’t show anybody anything without having them sign a legally binding document that ensures your safety and security. Software companies have been known to appropriate good ideas from talented technologists, often under the guise of "partnership," "demonstration" and "discussion."

In any case, your fist step is to start interviewing attorneys. You can’t do anything in this area without excellent legal counsel.

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