Bighorn Ventures

Strategic Marketing & Finance Consulting

Bighorn Ventures - Providing Direction for Growth - Strategic Marketing & Finance Consulting


Symyx (acquired by Accelrys in 2010) developed the field of combinatorial materials science (CMS).   CMS was commercialized via materials R&D services and associated R&D hardware and software products.  Bighorn engaged with Symyx to evaluate extending its R&D alliances outside of the energy (refinery & fuel cell) catalyst business into areas such as electronic, orthopedic and clean-tech materials.  Bighorn researched the market and identified ~60 Global 1000 alliance targets and engaged a large number of these targets.  While interest in R&D alliances was found, it was evident that a sustainable business fitting the Symyx business model did not exist.  

Engagement : Interim Executive (W2) 

 Project Components:

Market Landscape 

  • Researched and sized the collaborative R&D services market for electronic, orthopedic and clean-tech materials
  • Supported the market assessment and business planning for an oil viscosity sensor business which led to the spin off of Visyx .

Product Strategy & Market Entry

  • Pursued collaborative research & strategic alliances with a targeted set of Global 1000 R&D organizations.  
  • Developed ROI model for collaborative research services in the orthopedic materials based on market share movements.

Strategic Finance

  • Evaluated nanotechnology materials acquisitions and venture investments
I worked directly with Tony at Symyx to evaluate multiple potential collaborations and partnerships in the electronics / optics / medical materials area. After much in-depth analysis and market feedback from numerous global R&D leaders in the field, we determined that a sustainable business model (meeting certain prescribed business metrics and expectations) was not possible. Throughout the process, Tony’s analysis was spot on and rigorous. His assumptions were solid and reflected a maturity and sound judgment beyond his years. Tony helped Symyx better understand the materials collaborations marketplace, developed a novel and exhaustive ROI model, and evaluated several prospective investment / spin-off opportunities. Tony was a a great asset and creative resource that I can wholeheartedly recommend. He was also a pleasure to work with
— Troy Campione, VP, Symyx