29 March 2018

How can you sell Your intellectual property

Patent attorneys are often asked, “Can you help me to sell my intellectual property?” I am an experienced inventor, but I have no contacts and I do not know languages. I have a very interesting patent, the amount of money for which is very large, the invention potential is huge, but I need fantastic investments. I myself will never cope with it!”

            The answer to this question is that it is possible to arrange a public offer, according to the Civil Code. In this case, Rospatent in its bulletin publishes the information about the author of the invention and his readiness to conclude an alienation agreement with an interested individual or legal entity after the successful registration of a patent. Such public offer provides the applicant with a two-year exemption from paying the State Duties.

            However, there are quite a lot of other even more effective methods of selling intellectual property, and currently the most popular methods of selling are the methods implemented through the Internet.

            1. You can use the method of placing the advertisements of your technical solution on the Internet, through the social networks, the method of creating one’s own website or blog on YouTube. Having promoted the website or blog about Your technical solution, having told in detail about all its advantages and further prospects of its use in the presentation, it is easy enough to attract the attention of the representatives of large companies who are interested in acquiring innovative developments. They will contact You obligatory, if You leave links to Your online resource on forums, webpages of conferences and seminars on the relevant topic.

            2. You can use the services for hosting free advertisements, which work with the purchase and sale of intellectual property results. As a rule, such websites are a database of ideas, technologies or products in different fields of technology. They are equipped with a convenient search system for potential buyers or investors. Usually, the most acceptable conditions for a long-term hosting the advertisement, while keeping it on the first lines in case of a request, requires an additional payment.

3. There is a large variety of different commercial organizations, which are involved in the implementation of the intellectual property results. You can sell a patent using the platforms specialized in the purchase and sale of ready-made businesses, commercial assets and start-ups. Such websites offer their services for the sale of rights to an invention, license or an investor search, and also here the interested investors can download the information about the patents and the patent holder and to buy a patent from the holder.

            3. You can resort to the services of patent brokers. They will provide specialized assistance in preparing documents, developing a strategy for selling the “idea,” finding a buyer. They are trading platforms for intellectual property owners. By nature they are an electronic trading system created to conduct online auctions for the assignment of rights to subject matters of intellectual property. Placing the information about Your invention will allow you to assign the patent for a fee, the size of which will be determined by the results of trading in your lot. These websites allow the companies interested in purchasing or selling the rights to the inventions to get the information about the inventions the owners of which are ready to assign their rights. These resources are the link between patent holders and investors, they allow to shorten the path from the idea to the manufacture of goods. The purpose of their creation is to provide the information services for intellectual property owners, to reduce costs when promoting the developments. The patent owner receives a convenient tool to increase his profits from the assignment of the rights. You quote the price that initially suits you as a starting price. By putting a lot on auction, the owner can continue the search for potential buyers, informing them that the patent has been put on auction and that they can take part in it. The ideal strategy of the owner's behavior is to notify the competing companies on the market about his invention and on the fact, that it has been put on auction. For the indirect confirmation of the ownership of the patent at the registration, the owner must send a photo of the document (certificate) in a standard form confirming his right to this invention, indicate all necessary contact information, the description of the invention, the drawings, diagrams, photos, video of the workable specimens. You can also provide the information about the available certificates, awards, and attach a business plan for the investors and a professional evaluation of the intellectual property value, if any. Having placed a stake or won the tenders in the lot, the buyer informs the patent owner and the administration of the auction that he is ready to acquire the rights to this subject matter of intellectual property or to start the cooperation with the patent owner in implementing the development and he is ready to invest the corresponding amount of money. Further, the administration of the auction requests the confirmation of the size of the winner's stake, coordinates the scheme of the cooperation between the buyer and the patent owner, helps to conclude the transaction by signing an agreement under which one party grants to another party a complete exclusive right to the result of the intellectual activity that was of interest to him.

4. Another variant to declare to the patent owner about the desire to sell the invention is the possibility of addressing to full service inventive companies to accumulate and implement the inventions, which deal with the commercialization of ideas, the implementation of inventions, the attraction of investments, and which provide legal services. These companies deal with the search for technologies and inventions, the research of innovative projects and developments and with the search for investors. The company's specialists check the technological and commercial potential of the invention. The experts evaluate whether the implementation of the “idea” is real, whether it is necessary to create a new market for it or whether it will enter the existing one, give a primary evaluation and an economic justification, involve external consultants for a more detailed examination. When the conclusion is ready and there is an understanding that it is possible to work with the idea, the decision is made whether the company will invest its own money. If currently the invention is not interesting, then the agreement for attracting investments is concluded with the inventor. This is an engagement agreement, which includes interest to be charged for the search services: it is paid upon the fact of the sale or implementation of the technology. The search for investors is carried out by placing the information in the catalog of inventions on the company's website or by direct contacts.

5. In the nearest future, the public Internet site for inventors seeking for investors may appear. In Russia, the creation of an intellectual property exchange, which would allow joining a pool of inventors’ proposals and a pool of investors on one Internet site, portal has already been being discussed in one form or another for some time. However, this idea is still being worked out, especially within the framework of the digital economy development. Earlier, Rospatent has signed an agreement with the blockchain platform for intellectual property management called IPChain on the transfer of a database of right holders and authors to a new technology that would speed up the process of registering the rights due to a more effective interaction between authors, rights holders, individuals and legal entities. The IPChain platform users will have access to the patent analytics, state registration and intellectual property transactions.

Thus, the inventors have the opportunity to make money on their “ideas,” but in order to heighten the interest of potential inventors to Your invention, it is necessary not only to obtain a patent, but also to manufacture a model, prototype or mock-up, which can be touched and shown to the interested person, to prepare a business plan and presentation of an economically calculated and elaborate technical solution, ready for the implementation with the help of the Internet resources.

Patent Attorney / Chemical Specialist