Is it wrong to choose a thesis topic based purely on potential commercial application?

Actually never mind, I thought it through. A topic should be chosen with commercial application in mind. I am not an academic, I am an MBA candidate.

Intellectual pursuits and commercial application need not be mutually exclusive.

If I had to choose one over the other.

No. However, realize that doctoral theses, and many masters theses are public documents, so intellectual property contained in the thesis is no longer proprietary (though possibly if you can patent the process before you defend thesis). Some academics will find it low-brow to choose a commercially applicable topic, but there are plenty of ways to cast commercial topics in an interesting academic light. If it’s a doctoral thesis, just be aware that you will work with this topic day and night for a substantial chunk of your youth, so make sure it motivates you. For a Masters thesis, it still helps for it to be motivating, but they’re usually substantially shorter.