When it comes to licensing an invention idea, sometimes it is all about waiting for the right place and the right time. No one knows this better than innovation partners Adam Adams and Bill Ward who realized success from Boston America’s search for new candy packaging innovations.
Before we dive into the story of their licensing success, let’s take a look back at where Adam and Bill’s collaboration started…
While they are now located on opposite ends of the country, Adam in San Mateo, Calif., and Bill in Ravenel, S.C., just outside of Charleston, Adam and Bill met in college and both majored in Natural Resources. After college, they began an annual tradition of a fly fishing trip, and it was on these trips that they decided to partner as innovators. Currently, Adam is focusing on product development full time, and Bill runs a rapid prototyping business, when he’s not in Ecuador managing restaurants he owns there.
Now, back to Boston America…
The idea Boston America ultimately licensed was created almost 10 years ago. Adam and Bill’s licensing agent at the time encouraged them to come up with candy concepts as they were quick to market and several of the major toy manufacturers were getting into the game. Adam and Bill worked on clever candy designs that gave them immediate or lasting play value. With this concept specifically, they were going for as much of a “gross-out” factor as possible.
Then, in 2006 and 2007, the recession happened, and due to this, for nearly a decade, this concept (among many others), sat on the shelf. When the Boston America Search was announced, they saw their chance to give these ideas a second chance. Ironically, the idea chosen for a licensing was almost not submitted because at first blush, it didn’t seem like a good fit. At the time, Adam recalled that he felt it would be the least likely to make it in comparison to their other ideas. Lesson learned.
Adam and Bill shared some other great advice when asked about their journey so far:
Don’t fall in love with your ideas, instead fall in love with the process.
Have lots of ideas.
Construct your life to maximize your creativity: sleep, diet, people, exercise, quiet, etc.
Be persistent and remember that timing is everything.
Congratulations Adam and Bill!
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