Disclosed is a process for making surfactant capped nanocrystals of metal oxides which are dispersable in organic solvents. The process comprises decomposing a metal cupferron complex of the formula MXCupX, wherein M is a metal, and Cup is a N-substituted N-Nitroso hydroxylamine, in the presence of a coordinating surfactant, the reaction being conducted at a temperature ranging from about 150 to about 400 C., for a period of time sufficient to complete the reaction. Also disclosed are compounds made by the process.

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