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One of the most crucial items in a company’s assets is intellectual property (IP). When looking at the assets of Fortune 500 companies, much of the wealth is amassed through intangible assets like intellectual property. When you have a strong IP portfolio, you improve your companies leverage during business transactions, you can have more success with fundraising, and you may be open to opportunities with mergers and acquisitions. While IP can take many forms, patents are the most significant portion, especially if your company operates in biotech or high tech industries. Because of the number of transactions that occur in these areas, knowing the value of a patent portfolio is vital to the health of a business.


The Value in Portfolios

Patent sale transactions have been conducted for over 100 years, yet more recently, the market for these transactions have exploded. There are some transactions that are worth billions of dollars, depending on the portfolio and who may be bidding for it. In general, patents can be a valuable source of competitive information, as well as market and technical data. However, in order to get the information, you may have to sift through 120 million published patent documents. 

When you are looking for an easier way to estimate the value of patent information, you can use patent analytics. With analysis, you are able to identify the strengths or weaknesses of a portfolio, as well as the opportunities for the organization. The data can reveal parenting tends around the world and potential technology landscapes where potential lies. Once you get the information, it can be hard to understand the underlying data. You need to interpret how the data can be used and any limitations associated with the analysis. If you want to get the most information from the process, here are some tips you can follow.


Understand Methodology

There is more than one way to work with patent data, but not every approach will be beneficial to your situation. Just like photographers have different lenses and scales of resolution, patent information can’t be taken for the whole technology sector. On the other hand, the landscape can be tough to narrow in on for legal opinions. There are too many data points and intersections of information to go too big or too small in your analysis. Devise an ordered process that identifies a specific region, then look more closely into targeted areas with methods of patentability.


Understand Your Measurements

A data set for patent information is extremely complex, many times with one invention or idea producing several patent applications or individual patens. A generic data search and analysis can reveal thousands of results, and you should know if your results are patent families, inventions, or true patents. Any conclusions you draw from your analysis could be wrong if you don’t know the measurement of your data set. Your initial analysis should be expanded to include related family members, then work it back to counting families. You will be able to see the actual idea and inventions or just counting or analyzing patents.


Understand the Data

No matter how well you curate the information, you may need to clean up the data before you can draw an analysis. You will need to focus on the information and context that your user base and readership are expecting. The data should be arranged specifically to your organization, and your report should indent the technologies that were covered, reveal the benefits of the inventions and highlight any industrial uses for the patents. The more specific your analysis gets, the more value you will uncover. The data will speak to you if you let it. Once you have the narrative, the data visualization that will take place throughout the rest of the process is easier to act upon.


Conclusion

The overall mission or question needing an answer will inform how big of a data set you need. However, whether large or small, don’t try to rush the data analysis. Let the information deeply inform you of your next corporate move.