All too often, promising technology development projects languish for years in limbo after they move beyond the initial research stage. There is even a name for this: the Valley of Death, which projects need to cross before attracting startup funding, or development partners.
These projects are too far along to get funding from “research” sources, but are unable to negotiate partnership or licensing arrangements with large companies, or attract investors, because they are perceived as “too early”.
Some believe that the Valley of Death is an unavoidable feature of the landscape, or that it exists because of flaws in the way investors think. We think of it as more analogous to a sand trap in golf.
It certainly exists, and falling into it is bad. However it can be avoided all together with careful planning and good execution. Even if you fall into it, you can get out if you know how.