What Is Patent Quality? A Merchant Banc’s Perspective

by James E. Malackowski and Jonathan A. Barney

James E. Malackowski

Ocean Tomo, LLC., Co-Founder and Chief Executive, Chicago, IL, USA

Jonathan A. Barney

Ocean Tomo Managing Director, Irvine, CA, USA

The question “What is Patent Quality?” is one that has long been answered not by the authors of this paper but by the marketplace itself. It has been defined by the actions of patent holders in their decisions to maintain patents of quality and abandon patents of lesser quality and value. Ownership of quality patents has been rewarded by both public and private markets with a scale and precision that simply has not been well understood. Our statistical research shows not only that the marketplace appreciates quality patent assets, but that many of the attributes which drive quality assessment by market participants are well correlated to those that affect investor returns.

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