Dr. Rod Claycomb



PhD    University of CaliforniaDavis, CaliforniaUSA, 1997, Biological and Agricultural Engineering
MS      Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA, 1992, Electrical Engineering
BS       Shippensburg University, Shippensburg, Pennsylvania, USA, 1990, Physics and Mathematics


Quantec, Ltd.                                                                                                            January 2007 – present

Founding Managing Director

  • Started up the company established for commercialisation of high-value bioactives technologies based on successful milk fractionation research program set up within DEC International NZ Ltd
  • Have lead the discovery and commercialisation of naturally-derived milk fractions for high value animal and human health applications, now being marketed globally as IDPTM
  • Has lead a research team to achieve the world’s first proof-of-concept on-farm fractionation system for extracting high-value bioactives from raw whole milk
  • Effort has included setting up and managing a multi-disciplinary collaboration between several universities, research organisations and private industry
  • Commercial advisor for PhD student in novel on-farm fractionation techniques and coordinator for undergraduate summer student project investigating formulations for novel naturally derived mastitis treatment

Delink, Ltd. (privately owned business)                                                                 January 2007 – present

Managing Director

  • Consulting company specialising in assisting companies in linking high-tech research and development ideas or problems to positive market outcomes
  • Conducted scoping project for local university (University of Waikato) to scope the need for a formal programme in Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, resulting in the establishment of a specialization in Agricultural and Biosystems and a joint university level collaboration between two local universities to establish further programmes of study for Land-Based Industries
  • Scoping project for NZ-based sweet cherry grower to determine uses for waste orchard fruit, leading to discovery of novel bioactive features of NZ sweet cherries. Project led to a joint venture relationship to commercialise these high bioactive sweet cherry products for joint health and gout improvement.

Sensortec, Ltd.                                                                                             January 2001 – December 2006

Founding Chief Executive Officer

  • Manager of spin-off company established based on successful sensor research and development program set up within DEC International NZ Ltd.
  • Company focus is on development of on-farm, on-line milk component sensors for the international dairy industry.
  • Team grew from three to over twenty employees in seven years, including research, development, sales and manufacturing with research in sensors and systems for measurement and utilisation of biological components fluids
  • Released first commercial product within 14 months and now have five products and technologies on the market internationally
  • Involved in negotiating more than 12 domestic and international research, R&D and commercialisation agreements in at least 8 countries
  • Serve as Acting CEO for two JV subsidiaries related to (1) the exploitation of automatic dairy farming IP and (2) the facilitation of the uptake of automatic dairy farming in NZ (2003 – 2006)
  • Supervised several PhD and Master’s students on various biosensor and milk fractionation projects

DEC International NZ, Ltd.                                                                           June 1999 – December 2000

Director of Research and Development

  • Directed Product Development team (five persons) in development of milking machine systems and components leading to the release of more than 8 products in 18 months
  • Directed in-house research team (starting with two persons and reaching seven) in research related to on-line milk component sensing and on-farm milk separation/fractionation
  • Sought out, set up and directed multiple collaborative research and development partners in projects related to on-line milk component sensing

DDx, Inc., Denver, CO                                                                                         January 1997 – May 1999

Director of Engineering/Biosensor Development Engineer

  • Directed team of scientists and engineers to develop biosensing systems for measuring food-borne pathogens, medical and/or veterinarial analytes, and air-borne biological warfare agents
  • Directed product development for wireless sensing systems for animal agricultural applications
  • Managed research studies program between company and various universities


Commercialisation of high-tech products, dairy industry innovation, leadership, project management, sensors and instrumentation for measurement of biological parameters, electronics (digital and analog), automation and computer control, biochemistry, physiology and endocrinology


NUMBER OF PATENTS:   7 (granted); > 10 (filed from associated teams)


  • Responsible for leading a research programme in milk fractionation, which led to setting up and building a new business based on novel milk-derived proteins
  • Responsible for leading the start-up of a new sensor company, taking it from inception to 20+ employees including R&D, Marketing, Operations and Manufacturing, and managing a $1.5+ million annual budget
  • Wrote proposals to procure over $1,000,000 in government funding for R&D projects, staff secondment, student internships, technology transfer projects and business growth
  • Established collaborative research programme for on-line sensor systems for measurement of biological components of animal and human fluids, which led to the start-up of a new sensor company
  • Co-advisor for several TIF fellows (MSc and PhD) in conjunction with University of Waikato
  • Directed team to develop a biosensing system for measuring food-borne pathogens, medical and/or veterinary analytes and air-borne biological warfare agents. System includes three unique instruments involving fluid handling, incubation and end-point detection (patent filed)
  • Coordinated team of engineers, manufacturing, and marketing to plan a novel estrus detection system, including coordination of project scheduling, project costs, and potential ROI (patent filed)
  • Coordinated team of in-house engineers and contract design firms to re-engineer existing 900 MHz RF estrus detection system to 2.4 GHz RF system, with the purpose of allowing the product line to be marketed internationally
  • Provided engineering support, including development of engineering documentation system, for existing product line consisting of RF transmitting pressure switch for detection of estrus in cattle
  • Dissertation research involved design and implementation of a biosensor for on-line measurement of bovine progesterone during milking. Research involved pulling together a multi-disciplinary team of expertise from Animal Science, Veterinary Science and Engineering



Member, University of Waikato Science and Engineering Industry Advisory Board, 2003-2010

Member, University of Waikato Strategic Advisory Group, 2006-2010

Member, Waikato Ag-Biotech Cluster Leadership Committee, 2003-2004

Reviewer, Tertiary Education Commission, 2004

Charter Member, Institute of Biological Engineering (IBE)

Member, American Society of Agricultural Engineers (ASAE)

Member, Milk Handling Equipment Committee of ASAE

Invited Speaker and Lecturer for various conferences and university courses

Reviewer, Binational Research and Development (BARD) Program, 1997, 1998