The Quid Pro Quo – How Bad Patents Can Harm A Company New inventors are often unaware of the quid pro quo that is fundamental to the patent system. The inventors must show the world their innermost secrets of how to make or use their invention. In exchange, the government grants a limited right in the form […]
Getting Patents Fast. Most of the major patent offices of the world, including the USPTO, have programs for getting patents fast. A typical patent may move through the system over several years, and 3-7 years is pretty typical. However, these expedited programs can get the patent very quickly, sometimes within 9-12 months. The USPTO has three […]
Avoid Wishful Thinking Patents Many patents are filed with “wishful thinking”. This occurs when someone wants protection on a product but does not realize what the scope of the invention will actually be. For example, let’s say a company is making a fully automated, table top ice cream machine. Consumers will load up the machine […]
Focus on Patent Quality First, Then Quantity It has been said that patents are like hyenas. One hyena can be easily defeated, but not a whole pack. When doing multi-million dollar patent negotiations, patent quantity is often more important than quality. A large number of patents, which may be 10 patents in some cases or […]
Startup Company Valuation Goes Up With Patents High quality, investment-grade patents can have spectacular impact on a startup’s valuation. In the early stages of a company, especially when technology risks and market risks abound, the patents may be the most valuable asset the company has.
Patents need to have real business value. Patents should align with the business they are designed to protect. They need to capture the business’s competitive advantage, period. When they don’t accomplish this, the patents have no meaningful value.
How Patents Can Have a Multiplying Effect on a Startup Company Multiplying An Investment With Patents The best patents are those that multiply an investment and actually generate money on their own. Some companies have devolved into purely research and development companies that license technology. The integrated circuit industry has almost completely changed to this model, where […]
Getting a patent is the beginning, not the end. The Patent Bar often gives terrible advice for startup CEOs, but we as patent attorneys have a fiduciary duty to advise the client. Many patent attorneys, especially pay-for-services outside counsel, are giving terrible advice that is purely self-serving. Their advice is only designed to put money […]
A Roadmap For A Startup’s Portfolio A startup’s patent portfolio can be thought of in two distinct patent types: prophetic patents and non-prophetic. Non-prophetic patents can also be thought of as “data-driven” patents. Prophetic patents are a necessary evil, but they can be very damaging to a startup when used badly. Prophetic patents are those that are […]