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les Nouvelles - March 2009


A Best Practices For Developing, Expanding, And Renewing Your Inventory Of Licensable Technologies

David J. Gibson

DJG Management Associates, President, West Depford, NJ, USA

Nicholas J. DeMarino

Westford Technology Associates, President, West Chester, PA, USA

Many readers of les Nouvelles are expert in some aspects of licensing technologies. Patents are the focus for most of these readers, but all are aware that know-how has value too, and is part of the property owned by clients and employers. We propose here a process to address this missing piece in Intellectual Asset management.

Many companies—particularly those associated with LES—recognize the value of licensing and therefore of managing their Intellectual Assets. However, those same companies sometimes fail to have a good grasp on what their inventory of intellectual assets includes—that is, they don’t’ know all that they own, so they don’t know all that they have to manage! In addition, these companies frequently fail to keep their inventories up to date through audit programs and revisiting the inventory building process.

A value maximizing approach will attempt to include all that is owned, regardless of the way it is codified. To be successful, companies must develop and properly manage complete and updated inventories of intellectual assets. “Intellectual assets” in this case, are more than just a collection of patents ferreted out by any of the various computerized search programs. It must include those assets not covered by patents and referred to as know-how. Depending on the specific industry, the know-how portion of intellectual assets can be a significant and possibly major portion of an organization’s intellectual assets.

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