ThunderHouse has had a remarkable First Quarter. Lots of energy has been generated by our revitalized relationship with Medill/Northwestern University. Setting priorities going into the Second Quarter is essential: 1) ElishaHeart, 2) Advanced Television Production, 3) ThunderHouse@Medill & 4) NextGen MarCom. We continue making out-of-pocket investments to feed the progress of these priority projects; however, seeking outside funding is of growing importance.
Targeting Medtronic as a Strategic Partner
ThunderHouse has hired Minneapolis-based Harlan Jacobs to guide us to the right R&D decision-makers at Medtronic.
Harlan has already had an intro meeting with the top R&D Director, and we are anticipating a May presentation to Medtronic. Dr. Art Palmer has several ideas on how Medtronic can get ElishaHeart on a much "faster track" than the 5+ years of human trials normally required for FDA approval of an LVAD. A fallback to seed the project at Northwestern is problematic because of University "politics," but not impossible.
Advanced Television Production: "A" Team On Board!
On March 21, our "A" Team (Cris Dolan-Content, Les Crystal-Production, Ira Carlin-Distribution and Art Tauder-Funding) started work on " Tech Beat," the agreed-upon first project for Advanced Television Productions (ATP). On March 28, David Sibbet, Founder of The Grove Consultancy in The Presidio, SF agreed to join the ATP team. A descriptive brief has been prepared, and we have an April 15th to present the Advanced TV concept to Dean Hamm of Medill in an effort to secure Medill as a "home" for ATP.
ThunderHouse@Medill Launched on January 23rd
Dean Brad Hamm of Medill approved the start-up plan and provided the initial funding to launch the program. ThunderHouse matched this funding and the first student team has signed on. Remarkably, we've got two pilot projects a month ahead of schedule.
Pilot #1 from Medill: The NeuroMarketing Consortium, applying neuroscience to marketing problems. ThunderHouse@Medill will assist in positioning the consortium and developing communications for its
launch and funding drive.
Pilot #2 from INVO, a joint effort of McCormick Engineering & Feinberg Medical to develop a highly innovative biodegradable, liquid cast vascular stent. ThunderHouse@Medill will develop communications materials to secure the next round of R&D funding.
NextGenMarCom Projects Continue to Show Promise
Shopper Marketing has come of age! That's our theme and with support/funding from CBX (Branding & Store Environments), we continue our Business Intelligence efforts. Strategic Digital Marketing (SDI) is the specific business concept, and we are working to form a consortium to pilot test this concept in Q4 2014. Our immediate goal is secure cooperation & funding from major tech players, e.g. IBM, Cisco and Qualcomm.
Given the full plate of projects, other NextGen MarCom concepts are on a slower track even though they show promise for commercialization. We are probing for a pathway to develop The MarCom Spectrum as a revenue generating software application. We have discussions underway for funding a build out of The Spectrum for Healthcare MarCom.