Bright ideas sought for Innovation Workshop

4 mins read

FARMINGTON – Wouldn’t it be nice if all we needed was just a great idea? Perhaps a better mousetrap? Then the world would beat a path to our door!

The problem is that this is rarely how things work. Although producing innovations sometimes leads to a nifty invention and a related patent for that invention, it is so important to keep in mind that neither the innovation itself nor even the patent itself creates the business. In fact, making the business model work is actually the hardest part of any innovation. Veterans of the business world already know these things… often learned at great expense. However, those among us just starting out with a dream and some drive don’

t often know very much about developing a working business model. Of course, that’s the bad news.

The good news is that there are many resources in Maine available to people with innovative ideas. Perhaps you’re tired of trying to guess what your innovation is really worth? Or, maybe you’

re looking for connections to help you accelerate your innovation? You may also be wondering about protecting your innovation, but don’t know where to start.

If any of this sounds familiar to you, then you might want to mark your calendar for Thursday, Feb. 18th, for from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., the University of Maine and Eaton Peabody Patent Group will jointly present a workshop intended for anyone who has an idea and is looking for answers. The workshop will be held on the campus of the University of Maine at Farmington in the North Dining Hall. This is a free workshop for the general public as well as UMF students and faculty.

After attending the workshop, you will be better equipped to turn your innovation concepts into easy to understand business plans and will have a better understanding about the resources available to protect your innovation. The speakers will include Renee Kelly and Dennis Haszko. Ms. Kelly is the Co-Director of UMaine’s Foster Center for Student Innovation based in Orono. Mr. Haszko is a Patent Practitioner with Eaton Peabody Patent Group, LLC based in Augusta.

The workshop will also show you how to list your innovation in the new Maine and USA National Innovation Marketplaces. These are Internet-based open innovation marketplaces that connect innovation sellers, buyers, investors, manufacturers, and distributors. Workshop attendees will receive a free passcode that allows them to create an online public listing of their innovation (a $2,000 value) with free help from trained coaches. The Innovation Marketplace was created by UMaine alumnus and innovation guru, Doug Hall ’81, and his team for the U.S. Department of Commerce. It provides an innovation research report and sales forecast that buyers can quickly understand. For information on the Maine Innovation Marketplace and how the business simulations work, visit to learn more.

For more information about the workshop, you may contact Dennis Haszko directly at 207.778.4870. If you are interested in attending the Innovation Workshop on Feb. 18th, please send your name and contact information to Kathryn Wroten via email at or by phone at 207.622.3747. You are asked to RSVP by Feb. 11.

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