Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Emergent Names Choumbakos Its New President

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Emergent Names Choumbakos Its New President

Article excerpt

Cheryl M. Choumbakos, the current director of technology development and marketing for the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, has been named the new president of Emergent Technologies, a backer of biotechnology companies founded on Oklahoma research.

Choumbakos will assume her new position Nov. 1. As she makes that transition, Choumbakos said Oklahoma stands at a crucial fork in the road, one that could affect the state's economic future and standing in the high-tech community.

"We have an opportunity in Oklahoma right now to ensure our economic future and our place in the country and in the world as a significant player in the biotechnology/biomedical arena," she said.

Emergent Technologies' mission is to commercialize Oklahoma technology. The company combines the venture capital and risk- management investment models by providing early funding to start-up companies that produce technology with a high degree of commercial potential.

"What we do is try to identify these platform technologies and immediately put an application in place so that we have a revenue stream," she said. "And that way you don't have a long time period before you ever see any return coming back into the investment. You immediately start generating some kind of return."

As a result, the company provides investors the chance to "realize a significant return on their investment in a much shorter period of time with a much higher rate of return than what is generally ascribed to a venture capital firm," she said.

In her position, Choumbakos will oversee the completion of the company's new $5 million fund, which will go to start-up companies in the metro area. The fund holds $1 million. She will also work with the three companies already founded by Emergent Technologies: Pure Protein, MedSynergy and Hyalose.

In addition, Choumbakos will work with local scientists to foster the creation of several more biotech companies.

"There are numerous technologies that we are looking at," she said. …

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