Some Businesses are Benefiting from a Late Start in Patents

Google, Facebook & Others are Suddenly IP Players

Buying late and paying a premium for the patents that a company needs is no longer just a viable IP strategy, it is a surprisingly lucrative one.

This is the subject of my latest The Intangible Investor column appearing in the current IAM magazine. The recent moves of companies such as Google, Facebook and Microsoft that have been relative latecomers to patents, and are being forced to play catch-up, are an illustration that they have learned from their early miscalculations.

Once laggards, these businesses are benefiting from a late start, quickly amassing fully embodied patent families that they can rely on now, as opposed to gambling their fate on R&D and patents yet to issue.

“Balancing the right amount and type of research and patent filings with rights that are in-licensed or otherwise acquired is a strategy that more businesses are learning to employ.

“For those that are cash rich and creditworthy, it can make sense to buy patents after an industry starts to mature if it means securing the rights that they and others need. Overpaying rarely enters into the equation.”

For now, inefficiencies in the market are making prices for must-have patents affordable to those with sufficient cash or access to capital. Affirming patent value helps smaller players, too.

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For the full column, subscribers can visit The Intangible Investor. 

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