IP Services for Startups
It is argued that over 80% of a company’s value is attributed to intangible assets. These assets are highly important to capture, catalogue, qualify and protect to create real enterprise value and ensure a smooth “exit”.
Twitter, Facebook, and Google have all found their IP portfolios lacking in the past, which left them open to incoming IP litigation – to remedy this they had to spend $millions, or even $billions to acquire 3rd-party patent portfolios to rectify their shortcomings, either pre or post IPO.
Today, investors and acquirers value and assess IP more than ever, both for M&A and IPO events. Taking IP seriously from the start and getting your approach right, helps your company in 3 key ways:
An acquirer expects an IP position that is robust and aligned to your business. In due diligence, they will do all the usual “legals” but many will now look at your IP portfolio and determine to what extent it:
If your IP position falls short, some buyers will use this to chip down the price of your company.
Some exit deals fall apart, or experience a significant delay, due to “IP issues”.
Increase the chances of realising a successful deal by taking pre-emptive action to show the strength of your IP assets and the robustness of the business processes used to capture and protect the IP.
Having a strong IP story, being ready for due diligence, and having the commercial counter-arguments immediately in hand, helps de-risk the most valuable asset they are buying, and ensures the deal stays on track.
Analysing the IP landscape to assess risk, gives you an informed action plan. An IP position will then be built to deter threats from competitors, thus reducing the management team being distracted from the primary focus of getting to market.
ClearViewIP provides full-service IP support for every stage of the IP process. You will stand out from the competition by building a valuable collection of IP assets (patents, trademarks, trade secrets, software, designs etc.) that prove your innovation and differentiation. By assessing and managing your IP risks from the beginning, you are less likely to be “surprised” or knocked off track by competitors, patent trolls and licensing companies. The following services are essential tools for start-ups to achieve the 3 primary benefits of increasing enterprise value, improving the certainty of a successful exit and reducing IP risk.
Catalogue and evaluate the IP your business owns, uses, or has acquired. You can then figure out how to manage it, build a powerful “rich” story for prospective investors, and see if there is anything that would need fixing before a prospective exit.
A technology business does not have a complete business plan without an IP strategy. Assessing the IP risk, competitor behaviour and your current position informs a comprehensive IP Strategy that can deliver great business results.
An invention capture and management program helps you to identify, organise and build your intellectual property portfolio. This can be done whether you have an in-house IP person or not and can provide additional capacity to build a portfolio fast.
ClearViewIP’s team of business experts and patent data analysts will help you create a robust IP strategy, plan, process and dashboard that supports your exit story. With proper planning and building an IP strategy, you will position your organization well for a successful exit.
London-based technology company SwiftKey are the makers of a predictive keyboard powered by artificial intelligence that adapts to the way you type, and gets smarter over time learning from your personal writing style so you spend less time correcting typos. In April 2016, SwiftKey became part of Microsoft in a deal worth $250m. The purchasing price made this deal one of the biggest recent exits for a UK-based tech company.
“We have used ClearViewIP’s Innovation Management and IP Strategy Advisory services for some time to support SwiftKey’s IP-related goals. They have an excellent team of commercially-minded IP Consultants and Analysts that continue to support us. The working relationship we have with ClearViewIP has ultimately enhanced our ability to strategically grow, maintain and protect our world-class IP portfolio in the predictive text space.”
Former Head of IP at SwiftKey