"Over the past several years, patents have come to be recognized by the financial community not just as a bundle of legal rights, but as an independent commercial asset class, like real estate and corporate securities. Innovative new models for monetizing patents have emerged based on the creative adaptation of existing models used with more traditional asset classes such as asset-backed securities and more traditional strategic models.You can read the chapter in full here.
“This shift in perception about the uses and the value of patents,” says Ron Laurie, an IP investment banker and former patent attorney who focuses on transactions, “has spawned a proliferation of market makers, intermediaries, and service providers, including patent aggregators, enforcers, investors, financiers, brokers, exchanges, and auction houses. “New business models are emerging every day. More recently, institutional investors, in the form of private equity firms and hedge funds, have come to see investing in patents, or in patent litigation, or trading public company shares based on patent-related information, as a natural expansion of their existing business.”
Laurie contends that the shift in perception regarding IP assets has until now had little, if any, impact, on corporate mergers and acquisitions. The reasons are both structural and environmental, and derive in large part from the problem of corporate valuation, especially when it involves intangible assets. IP was traditionally viewed in M&A transactions as a possible “deal-breaker,” effectively an afterthought that IP
lawyers attended to. When it came to consummating a transaction, these professionals were much more likely to regard all news as bad news.
Today, IP in M&A is starting to be seen as an important deal facilitator that the bankers, private equity capital providers, and others need to understand from the start".
And here’s a link to Ron's half-hour video interview on the subject of IP-driven M&A.