The AO's Technology Transfer

We drive your idea toward success with expertise and funding.

We put our researchers, surgeons, and industry experts to work for your idea and we are not afraid to cross traditional boundaries when it comes to how we think. This is a key component of the translational dimension of our activities—and it lies at the heart of our bench-to-bedside approach. This setup allows us to combine patient-centric research, based on real-life clinical problems and patient data, while connecting the surgeon with the vision and idea to the right people, both within industry and the AO network.

The AO's four-step formula for success

Unfortunately, disruptive ideas don't grow on trees. They require hard work and resilience, and they often take you out of your comfort zone. Great ideas are not automatically successful; they require a system and a curated process. Together with our experts, we use our winning formula to help you transform your research dreams into real-life success and revenues, while delivering better care for patients around the world.

Your idea

How do you know if you are sitting on a ground-breaking idea that has the potential to improve patient care or surgeon education?

A rule of thumb is that it:

  • Provides an innovative solution to a real clinical problem backed by evidence of a strong product-market fit
  • Has the potential to be patent protected
  • Is driven by your plan, passion, and grit to make it happen
  • Is well-equipped to scale


We can support you with funding and expertise to help you navigate the complex landscape of intellectual property protection, development and manufacturing, regulatory approval, building clinical evidence, and an exit strategy.


Our network of surgeon entrepreneurs, researchers, investment professionals, and operations experts has real-life know-how when it comes to launching products and winning over the market.

We understand start-ups because we’ve been there ourselves—and we work closely with industry connections to anticipate future challenges and opportunities.


Together we make an impact by improving patient care and surgeon education.

And we share the fruit of our labor—the revenues.

Bring your idea to life!

The new call for proposals starts on May 1, 2023

Deadline to apply is August 31, at 12:00pm (CEST)

Anyone can apply  - Read the FAQ and if you still have questions, drop us an email!

Why you should team up with us

You gain access to a global network of 460,000 health care professionals in the musculoskeletal area.

You benefit from direct access to the very latest, world-renowned clinical expertise.

We support you throughout your project. The AO has strong funding capacity.  

You can feel confident that your idea is in good hands.

We offer support for early stage concepts, including regulatory and intellectual property expertise, business know-how, and more.

You'll get in contact with the right people.

By partnering with us, you get independent access to the medical technology industry, with the AO’s 60-plus years of experience backing you up.

We believe that surrounding yourself with the right people makes all the difference in the world.

Let us introduce you to our multidisciplinary team of innovation mentors in the Technology Transfer Board.

Todd Dollinger

Todd Dollinger

Robert Frigg

Robert Frigg

Jill Helms

Jill Helms

Anita Ignatius

Anita Ignatius

Michael Schütz

Michael Schütz

Lingga Tanamal

Lingga Tanamal

Check the Development Incubator and Strategy Fund project portfolio.

Latest innovation success stories

Michael Schütz

"As part of the AO Innovation Translation Center (AO ITC), the Technology Transfer office offers an opportunity for inventors to take vital steps toward applying their ideas to advance patient care."

Michael Schütz, Chairperson, Technology Transfer Board, AO ITC