Thursday 31 January 2008

IP Finance group meets

A group of 18 people concerned in IP Finance issues met last night in High Holborn, London. Eva Lehnert (IFPI) gave a short talk on "The UNCITRAL Legislative Guide on Secured Transactions and the issues arising out of the collateralisation of IP" (a short hand-out is available on request: email here if you'd like the hand-out or want to be added to the group's informal mailing list), while Jeremy Phillips (IP consultant, Olswang) and Ben Goodger (Rouse International) described their own experiences at the hands of UNCITRAL. It was agreed to develop this weblog as a means of exchanging information concerning all aspects of IP finance and to attempt to create a bibliography of current materials of the various interface between IP law and practice and financial issues (in particular colleratalisation, IP valuation, tax aspects, assessing damages and insolvency). It was agreed that a further meeting (to which all are welcome) would be held some time after the International Trademark Association in May, to take stock of further developments.

Tuesday 29 January 2008

Successful captaincy boosts sports star's brand valuation

The Economic Times, India, reports that 18 years after he first played cricket for India, spin-bowler Anil Kumble's brand value has rocketed. Said the joint MD of Percept Holdings, a company that has worked with many Indian sportstars:
"To be honest, all of us have always ignored Kumble, even when he became captain, and he didn’t have a huge valuation. However, he has added a new dimension to his resume - that of an outstanding leader in very serious circumstances - which is sure to make a huge difference to his brand valuation".
The article adds that Kumble’s career graphic bears a striking resemblance to his brand fortunes. Just as he never really got the recognition due from cricket fans, he had also been the forgotten man of Indian cricket when it came to celebrity endorsement and his brand value always remained relatively low. additionally,
"Bowlers in any case do not get as much as batsmen - unfortunately that’s the way advertisers perceive endorsement deals".

Sunday 27 January 2008

Indian FMCGs look to brand val as a marketing tool

Business Standard (India) has reported that Indian companies are now turning to brand valuation as a means of assessing the success of their market strategies in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) sector. One example is cited of a company that shifted the emphasis of its marketing from retail-targeted incentives to consumer-oriented ones. Adds the article,
"Brand valuation measures mainly two criteria - the potential profitability of the brand and non-financial factors like brand recall as compared with competitors. In India, such exercises have been undertaken mostly by large conglomerates, such as Tata, since it is easier to quantify the royalty to be charged from group companies using the corporate brand name. However, of late, companies across sectors, especially fast-moving consumer goods and telecommunications, have been valuing their individual brands. In the FMCG sector, brand valuation used to be popular mainly among multinational companies. However, sources say a clutch of home-grown entities are taking the route. Among these companies are Marico, Dabur India, Sun Earth Ceramics (the maker of Sonora tiles), Cholayil (the maker of Medimix) and personal care services firm VLCC".
The article then says:
"Disclosing the value of brands enables companies to have better investor relations and consumer perception. It also helps in tackling corporate litigations considering the rise in trademark cases, say companies".

Friday 25 January 2008

Rationale for copyright damages

Writing yesterday on Canada's approach to the award of damages in copyright infringement proceedings, Michael Geist states:
"Canada is one of the only countries in the world to have a statutory damages provision within its copyright legislation. It creates the prospect of massive liability - up to $20,000 per infringement - without any evidence of actual loss. This system may have been designed for commercial-scale infringement, but its primary use today is found in the U.S. where statutory damages led to the massive liability for one peer-to-peer file sharing defendant and leaves many defendants with little option but settlement. Before Canada faces similar developments, we should amend the statutory damages provision by clarifying that it only applies in cases of commercial gain".

Thursday 24 January 2008


This weblog is born of a genuine need for reliable and accurate information to be identified, made available and discussed within the intellectual property community. At present, while everyone agrees that much IP is hugely valuable, it is quite clear that the IP community is floating helplessly on a sea of uncertainty, at the mercy of those whose other disciplines better equip them to appreciate the monetary side of IP rights. That is why this blog will post information concerning at least the following topics:

* the securitisation of IP;

* how and for what purposes IP rights are valued;

* how damage to the value of an IP right, or to the value of a business based on that right, should be assessed;

* R&D and product development finance.

If you'd like to know more about this weblog, email IP Finance here.