Richard Lloyd

In the latest issue of IAM you’ll find our inaugural market makers top 40: our ranking of the main movers and shakers in IP transactions and investment. Instead of playing it safe by simply naming the 40 in alphabetical order, we decided to make things harder for ourselves by ranking them according to what we felt was their level of influence and impact on the overall market. We’re sure you’ll feel we’ve missed a few names, included people we should not have done, or placed someone too high or too low on the list, and we would welcome any constructive feedback on that.

Part of the thinking behind the market makers was to lift the veil that surrounds so many IP deals and pick out the personalities that really drive the market not simply grab headlines. We think it’s a very strong list and one worth revisiting next year.

Below is the ranking in full with some extra detail - we’ve also split the 40 into sectors and by geography. Not surprisingly, individuals based in North America dominate, while operating companies have the most representatives with 15. That’s a powerful reminder that for all the talk of new markets in Europe and Asia, as well as all the headlines about NPEs and patent trolls, IP is still a business where bluechip companies and the US set much of the agenda.

The top 40 at a glance

 1. Horacio Gutierrez, Corporate vice president and deputy general counsel, Microsoft

2. Peter Detkin, Vice chairman, Intellectual Ventures

3. Steve Mollenkopf, CEO, Qualcomm

4. Ken King, General manager IP, IBM

5. Erich Spangenberg, CEO IPNav

6. Kasim Alfalahi, CIPO, Ericsson

7. Yoav Roth, Senior managing director, Hudson Bay Capital

8. Paul Melin, CIPO, Nokia

9. John Veschi, CEO Rockstar

10. Kent Walker, General counsel, Google

11. Matthew Vella, CEO, Acacia

12. John Amster, CEO, RPX

13. Jeffrey Smith, CEO, Starboard Value

14. Boris Teksler, President, Technology group, Technicolor

15. John Lindgren, CEO, Conversant

16. Naveen Nataraj, Senior managing director, Evercore

17. Eran Zur, head of the IP finance group, Fortress Investment Group

18. Gerard DeBlasi, CEO, Round Rock

19. Andrew Perlman, CEO, Vringo

20. Dan McCurdy, CEO, AST, founder and chairman, PatentFreedom

21. Peter Holden, Senior vice president, IP Value

22. Noreen Krall, Chief litigation counsel, Apple

23. Ira Blumberg, Vice president intellectual property, Lenovo

24. Doug Croxall, CEO, Marathon Patent Group

25. William Merritt, President and CEO, InterDigital

26. Jim Skippen, President and CEO WiLAN

27. Terry Gou, Chairman, Hon Hai

28. Gerald Holtzman, President, PMC

29. Ron Epstein, President and CEO, Epicenter IP Group

30. Toshimoto Mitomo, Senior VP of IP, Sony

31. Richard Fields, Chairman and CEO, Juridica Investments

32. Brian Hinman, Chief IP officer, Philips

33. Hideo Toyoda, Director IP Centre, Panasonic

34. Dana Hayter, Vice president legal and corporate affairs, Intel

35. Bernard Frohwitter, Founder and managing director, IPCom

36. Izhar Armony, General partner, Charles River Ventures

37. Ashley Keller, Managing director, Gerchen Keller Capital

38. Guy Proulx, Chairman and CEO, Transpacific IP

39. Craig Thompson, Senior vice president of IP, Alcatel-Lucent

40. Soon Gan Kang, CEO, Intellectual Discovery

Operating companies - Total in the 40: 15

Top 5

Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft

Steve Mollenkopf, Qualcomm

Ken King, IBM

Kasim Alfalahi, Ericsson

Paul Melin, Nokia

Aggregators/NPEs/PAEs – Total: 14

Top 5

Peter Detkin, Intellectual Ventures

Erich Spangenberg , IPNav

John Veschi, Rockstar

Matthew Vella, Acacia

John Amster, RPX


Funders/investors – Total: 7

Top 5

Yoav Roth, Hudson Bay Capital

Jeffrey Smith, Starboard

Naveen Nataraj, Evercore 

Eran Zur, Fortress

Richard Fields, Juridica


Breakdown by region:

North America: 29

Europe: 6

Asia: 5