Technology Scouting: Finding A Valuable Patent Portfolio

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Growth! The basic word that you will listen to everywhere if you are in the business. This growth makes market leaders. But how to achieve this growth? By selling maximum products or services? but, what drives the sales? The answer is cost, reach, affordability, consistent & disruptive innovation, and progressive approach. 

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The important point for consideration here is progressive or consistent innovation which is the main asset. So, effective measures must be taken to protect your innovation from being copied. 

Now the question that comes to mind is how big players like Google, Microsoft, Apple, IBM, etc are protecting their innovations? – Patents! 

Patents provide an exclusive right to the inventors, to prevent or stop others from commercially exploiting an invention and robust patent portfolios are driving forces behind the success of such big players. 

So, do the companies spend only on R&D developments and on the protection of these innovations? Not really. 

In today’s era, from universities to big companies, everyone in every domain or field is striving to innovate, whether it is electronics, telecommunications, nanotechnologies, automobiles, or healthcare. This creates a huge rush in every domain which leads to the creation of minor technology gaps and so is the granularity in the creation of intellectual property. 

Due to huge competition in every sector, companies or organizations are not just innovating or optimizing old technologies but also bringing up new trends and new technologies. This is their success story and that is why they are the market leaders. 

The rate of internal innovation must outpace the rate of external innovation for a company to succeed in the future, it is also asserted. 

In the current scenario, patent filling has seen a significant push, scientists, engineers, scholars, and inventors know the real value of patents that’s why patent filing is rising and in countries like India, it has risen 30% in the last five years, while the number of granted patents almost tripled. 

Now, coming to the benefits of patents, it is very clear that patent holders can generate or receive huge royalties by granting licenses to the infringers or the entities that want to commercialize these inventions. 

Coming to the opposite aspect, what if your product disclosure overlaps with a patent? The possible solutions to overcome this problem, without going for re-designing are: 

  1. Go for license: In this case, you need to approach the patent inventors for a license and in return, you need to pay them royalties. These royalties could be fixed and additionally may include shares on sales. 
  2. Buy the patent: This is a situation-based solution if the patent holder is a small firm, and the product has a higher revenue generation potential. It can be a valuable tool against competitors.  

Tech Scouting in Open Innovation 

If we focus on buying aspect, currently many companies are collaborating with universities, research institutes/labs, other companies, or even individuals for sourcing tech and intellectual property. This tactic is known as open innovation, which is the practice of businesses and organizations sourcing ideas from external sources as well as internal ones.  

Buying the right set of patents is a much optimal solution, keeping in mind the potential and future value. This is where technology scouting comes into the picture! 

Technology scouting is a method of technology management in which emerging technologies or the latest trends are identified, technology-related information is steered into an organization, and it supports the acquisition of innovations or intellectual property, or patents. 

It is a key tool in the technology management of an organization, used for strategic purposes to extract important insights into external technologies and internal requirements of an existing organization, in order to execute patent acquisition operations. Technology scouting is also known to be part of competitive intelligence, for framing business or competitive strategies. 

Technology scouting so that the right set of patents are acquired: Points to remember 

  1. Identification of key players in technological domains: The technology scouting provides rich information related to main players in a particular technology domain, number of patents, filing trends, etc. It also provides clues about active firms whether the active firm is big or small, in terms of revenue and patents. By doing an in-depth analysis of its patent portfolio, its patent valuation can be made and thus acquisition decisions can be taken. 
  2. Identification of universities, research institutes, or labs: It is well known that the roots of technology lie in the laboratories of universities. Currently, many of the recent technology trends are university spin-offs. 
    Further, we can even look for major innovation collaborations between universities and organizations. 
  3. Emerging technologies: We can analyze the technology clusters to develop futuristic strategies. We can gather data related to potential markets, and plan disruptive innovations. We can also identify latest trends in particular geographies or locations. 

Conclusion

Technology scouting can give a lot of insights, which can help organizations in securing a rich and valuable set of patents or patent portfolios. Further, it also provides deep insights and valuable data regarding latest trends in your domain of interest. 

About TTC

We’ve constantly identified the value of new technology carried out by our pretty skilled executive crew with backgrounds as our professionals. Like the IP professionals we empower, our starvation for development is never-ending. We IMPROVISE, ADAPT, and IMPLEMENT in a strategic manner.

TT Consultants offers a range of efficient, high-quality solutions for your intellectual property management ranging from

and much more. We provide both law firms and corporations in many industries with turnkey solutions.

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