Greetings to all our colleagues, friends and clients!
With summer officially in session, I hope all our readers enjoying travel and some vacation time.
This month marks 5 year to the Alice decision, one of the Supreme Court's most impactful decisions related to patent eligibility. I was a speaker at the IP Watchdog Patent Masters symposium in Washington DC earlier this week (June 24th) where I shared insights related to the state of patent valuations in the post-Alice era. My main conclusion is that.... It is really difficult to draw any conclusions, since IP valuations remain confidential and are not regularly reported. Having said that, we are observing some interesting trends when it comes to startups and their patent holding patterns. A study documenting our findings and observations is coming up next month on IP Watchdog.
June also marks the month that
IAM announces their 300 list
and I have been honored again to be included on this list, for the 7th year in a row. As I say every year, there is nothing I would rather do than work as an IP valuation and strategy expert. Being recognized by this top industry publication among an international group of peers is a great recognition of the work we do here at Foresight, and of the wonderful team I have working with me.
In our Blog section this month is another installation in our series covering our conversations with founders, and the solutions we offer them. This blog deals with
valuation methods for early stage startups
In the IP Digest section we highlighted two IP stories related to Huawei, one related to its patents and one related to its trademark.
Foresight in the Media
IAM Strategy 300 - The world's top IP value
creators are named in new edition of market-leading publication.
Foresight President and Stanford Lecturer, Efrat Kasznik, was once again selected for inclusion in the
IAM Strategy 300
list of leading world IP strategists, where she has been listed annually since 2013. The
IAM Strategy 300
is universally acknowledged as a listing of leading IP professionals who, through their strategic advice, are generating wealth from intellectual property for their clients and organizations. This unique guide is published by IP business media platform IAM Magazine, based on research undertaken by a team based in London, Washington DC and Hong Kong.
Foresight Blog Highlights
In our latest blog series, the
Foresight Startup Q&A Blog, we are sharing some of the most popular questions we receive from our startup clients. Topics include Early Stage Startup Valuation, Financial Modeling, IP Strategy and more. Each week our team spends time answering our clients' most pressing questions, and this blog series aims to share our thoughts and answers to those questions with our broader startup community. The second installment deals with valuing an early-stage startup when dealing with seed investors.
IP News Digest
Eli Lilly has petitioned the supreme court to reconsider a federal court opinion that invalidated a company patent that covered its Cialis drug. In 2011, a German company described by Lilly as a "shadowy non-practicing entity" challenged the patent. In 2018, Cialis posted a 20% dip in global sales largely attributed to the loss of U.S. and European patent protections. For Q1 2019, Cialis sales continued to nose dive, posting a 38% year over year drop.
After the cryptocurrency craze of 2017 and early 2018, many digital coins now trade below their original ICO price. However, spurring from a recent rebound the price of bitcoin and other popular cryptocurrencies, investors are jumping on a new way to get in the market. The so called "Initial Exchange Offerings" are very similar to ICOs, but have one key difference: the tokens are sold to investors through an existing crypto exchange, rather than being sold directly by the startup. Investors typically need to already hold the token of the exchange in order to participate. Through May, about $518M had already been raised through 63 IEOs this year. Critics of the new process call it "ICO 2.0"
In response to unrelenting pressure from the Trump administration, Huawei is unleashing its "weapons of economic warfare" - its patent portfolio of over 56,000. The company holds a global portfolio of critical technology patents in areas such as telecommunications and networking. As access to U.S. markets and suppliers is being restricted, the company is stepping up its pursuit of royalties and licensing fees. Huawei has extended licensing talks with Verizon Communications and is currently in dispute with Qualcomm. The company has also filed claims against the defense contractor Harris Corp.
Huawei's efforts to launch its own operating system are picking up again in the wake of a potential permanent denial of access to the Android operating system. The company has reportedly been working on the OS for years, and has previously suggested that the system could roll out as early as this fall. While this would allow Huawei to continue operations in the face of its US bans, many are concerned about the security of the system, as software is not the company's strongest area.
A review board within the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has agreed to take a second look at the validity of three Peloton patents after finding that Flywheel has established a "reasonable likelihood" of winning its argument that the patents cover old ideas. This news came just hours after Peloton Interactive had announced that it had confidentially filed for an initial public offering. Peloton sued Flywheel last September, claiming Flywheel copied its bike technology and infringed its patents. A victory for Peloton at the review board could be key to the ongoing legal battle with its rival.
CPA Global Webinar
The IP in IPO: IP Valuation Lessons from Recent Public Exits
Thursday, July 18 @ 8:45am - 10:00am Pacific Time
The year 2019 is shaping up to be a record year for IPOs: from iconic brands like Levi Strauss, to technology disruptors like Lyft and Pinterest, billions of dollars in valuations have been realized through public exits, providing hefty returns to investors and shareholders. When it comes to understanding what triggers the enormous valuations of some of these companies (commonly known as "Unicorns" - a private startup with a valuation in excess of $ Billion), an interesting question to explore is the role that IP assets play in driving the valuation. One thing we know from a previous study done on Unicorns, is that most of them hold very little patents, if any. In this webinar, we will analyze four of the recent IPOs involving different business models and IP assets, and try to understand how the value of these assets is reflected in the value of the initial public offering.
Some of the learning objectives of this webinar include:
- What role does IP play in startup valuations?
- What types of IP assets were created by companies who recently went public?
- What types of IP issues frequently emerge pre-IPO and how are companies dealing with them? Do these issues have an impact on valuation?
- How can the value of IP assets be measured pre- and post-IPO?
When: September 25, 2019
Foresight president, Efrat Kasznik, will join
a panel of experts includes a diversified group of participants in the Blockchain ecosystem: corporate executives, legal experts, VC investors and startups. The panel will address some of the key topics associated with the successful deployment of Blockchain technologies in the enterprise.
When: October 20-23, 2019
Where: Phoenix, AZ