Intellectual Property Master Class: Patent Licensing — Lessons Learned and Mistakes to Avoid

November 9, 2004

The revenues from patent licensing increased from $3 billion in 1980 to $15 billion in 1990 and to $120 billion in 2001. More and more entities are looking to patent licensing to enhance cash flows. Likewise, companies are receiving offers to license patents (both "carrot" and "stick") that entail very large sums. While patent licensing programs take years to unfold, early decisions can profoundly impact the success or failure of a patent licensing program. This presentation went beyond the fundamentals to assess the practical lessons learned and the mistakes to avoid. Jim DeGraw and Jim Myers, both Ropes & Gray partners with substantial patent licensing and patent litigation experience, discussed the opportunities and pitfalls associated with patent licensing.