With TTWiiN, Thornton Tomasetti has found an avenue to support—and retain—aspiring, in-house entrepreneurs, while garnering a stake in the potentially profitable results.
In 2015, the then-newly merged firms of New York-based engineering firm Thornton Tomasetti (TT) and Weidlinger Associates established TTWiiN (a play on Thornton Tomasetti Weidlinger Innovation accelerator), a privately held company that provides venture capital funding for startups in exchange for equity and board seats. Around the same time, TT formalized a research and development (R&D) approach that considered proposals from employees to become stand-alone companies with TTWiiN’s help.
This appealed to Jonatan Schumacher, who joined TT in 2010 as director of CORE Studio, the firm’s R&D incubator, building custom software, apps, and computational models and strategizing design and fabrication workflows. With TTWiiN’s backing, he could take his work one step further.