Features

Inside the 2016 brokered patent market

By Kent Richardson, Erik Oliver and Michael Costa

Although conditions are tough, the brokered patent market remains viable and robust; and while prices may have bottomed out, new buying opportunities are emerging

After five years of analysing and reporting on the patent market, the only constant appears to be change. Although asking prices have stabilised, sales are down, bringing the value of the brokered market down to $165 million from $233 million last year. However, the launch of both IAM Market and the Industry Patent Purchase Programme (IP3) has introduced new buying opportunities. At the same time, the impact of negative patent decisions is becoming apparent as non-practising entities (NPEs) pull back from the market. For the first time, purchases by corporations have exceeded NPE purchases. Even the biggest NPEs have been affected, with RPX succeeding Intellectual Ventures (IV) as the new buying leader. Further, the data shows that the US Supreme Court’s decision in Alice has crushed much of the nascent financial technology (fintech) patent market and affected software package sales rates. Finally, we received better litigation data this year and it appears that the litigation risk from sold patents is much higher than previously reported – you may want to reconsider your risk models and membership of defensive aggregators.

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Issue 89