To fund nanotechnology, shop at Home Depot

Bernie Marcus, co-founder and one of Home Depot’s largest individual shareholders, has been named “Forbes/Wolfe 2006 Nanotech Person of the Year”. I was a little surprised until I read this interview; he’s quite a visionary and is putting his money where his mouth is. Here at Foresight, we like that a lot. Some excerpts:

Recently, Marcus made a $15 million donation to Georgia Tech for a nanotechnology center…

“You don’t need to understand the intricacies of the science to understand its impact. When I understood the rudiments of what nanotech was all about, I knew I wanted to participate…”

“New science, new products, the field is wide open. I’m most excited by the possibilities. Nanotechnology in 10 years will have a profound impact on our lives. Given the pace of technology advancement, 10 years will be the equivalent to a few lifetimes with the pace of innovation and adoption of new technologies that we’ll experience…”

“Nanotechnology in medicine is going to have a major impact on the survival of the human race…Nanotechnology will have a far greater impact on society and medicine by an order of magnitude than penicillin…”

“The next Bill Gates will come from nanotechnology. There is no doubt in my mind…”

“We’ve already lost our manufacturing base and are losing to cheaper labor overseas. Nano will allow us to create value and wealth for the U.S. to continue our growth. Nanotechnology represents two things: first, a very distinct possibility of creating cures, treatments and diagnosis for all the terrible ailments that people are facing because they are living longer, and secondly, it’s creating an environment where the U.S. can maintain its lead in the world in innovation, creating new jobs so citizens can feed their families, and having higher standards of living and a stable economy. If technology allows you to do both of these, it’s real…”

It’s clear why he has been so successful. Mr. Marcus: how about starting Nano Depot? —Christine

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