If recent news is any indicator, patents are extremely valuable assets! During 2011, Nortel Networks Corporation sold 6,000 patents for $4.5 billion to a technology consortium that included Apple, Microsoft and RIM. Shortly thereafter, Google bought, in one of the largest patent deals in history, more than 24,000 patents and patent applications from Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion. Since 2011, IBM has sold more than 2,000 patents to Google for an undisclosed price. And now, Kodak, under the mandate of its Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, is trying to sell 1,100 of its patents for $3 billion.
In a recent editorial in the Wall Street Journal one commentator on the world of business puzzled that Google would so violate the patent rights of their competitors with their Android mobile operating system. He mused incredulously, that Google seems to assume that their competitors in the smartphone market don’t have a right to exclude them from using their intellectual property.
As funds are withdrawn from declining investments, venture capitalists, hedge funds, private equity and institutional investors have substantial holdings to invest in the fundamentals of future market growth.