Between points he told me about a new technology that could make a tennis ball bounce twice as high and twice as long as today's brands. He said it was the same technology that promises to produce stain-resistant clothes and develop computer storage media with 40 times the capacity of current models.
The technology Ron is talking about is called nanotechnology. Maybe you've heard of it.So while we're talking small in terms of deployable technologies, the upside of the nanotech industry is huge. The National Science Foundation (NSF) pegs the US market growth for nanotechnology products at about $1 trillion over the next ten years. The NSF also claims that the technology will boost job growth significantly, adding between one to two million new jobs in the US by 2010, and that about half of all new drugs developed in the US will be created using nanotechnology tools.
Another study – "Nanotechnology in Health Care" – from the Cleveland-based Freedonia Group states that key growth areas within the nanotechnology sector include new, improved cancer and central nervous system therapies based on solubilization technologies. In the pharma sector, protein- and peptide-based compounds for cancer, diabetes, infectious diseases, and organ transplant acceptance should fuel nanotechnology growth. Investors, however, shouldn't expect those technologies to materialize overnight. "Diagnostic tests based on nanoarrays and quantum dots, and imaging agents based on superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles will also see strong growth," says the study. "(But) in spite of progress in introducing new products, the vast potential of nanotechnology in the health care field will not be fully realized for at least a decade as stringent regulatory barriers and technical complexities delay its commercialization."
Eager to be the first kids on the block to capitalize on nanotechnology financially, the venture capital industry has poured $700 million into the sector over the past two years.
WHAT IS NANOTECHNOLOGY? Lux Capital, which recently launched a nanotechnology index on the American Stock Exchange, defines nanotechnology as "the manipulation, precision placement, measurement, modeling, and creation of sub-100 nanometer scale matter." Another financial services firm, ThinkEquity Partners LLC, has published a report entitled "Thinking Big About the Small World: A ThinkPiece on Nanotechnology." Aside from in-depth research reports on over 30 publicly-traded nanotechnology companies, and a useful primer on nanotechnology called "Nano for the Novice," the report has much to say about the impact this technology will have on society.
Their findings are myriad and useful, especially the ones with an investment focus. . .