An audit consists of a review of the existing IP portfolio and developing a plan to maximize any revenue potential. The IP portfolio is composed of all patents, copyrights, trademarks and trade secrets, and may also include customer lists, manufacturing and business practices, vendor lists, testing procedures and test equipment designs.
The goal of the audit is to evaluate each IP asset in terms of present corporate objectives. Since corporate objectives change over time, it is expected that some existing IP assets will no longer be key to current corporate goals. These assets can then be exploited to:
- Generate new revenue via sale or licensing, or
- Reduce expenses via IP donations or abandonment
Each phase of the audit is reviewed by key members of each relevant business unit, including marketing and legal. The key tasks of the audit include:
Asset Identification Each asset is identified, mapped to existing products and ranked according to product relevance and scope. This stage also identifies those elements which have little or no potential for producing revenue.
Profiling Each asset is examined to determine how it aligns to each business unit and to present corporate objectives. Those assets which are no longer critical to the core business or that offer no real market differentiation are candidates for licensing. This stage also offers the ability to take pro-active steps to align technical research with projected business areas.
ROI Assessments For those assets which are candidates for licensing a valuation is done to determine the approximate revenue potential. Those which show a significant yield are then matched with potential licensors for market campaigns. Those assets which don’t show a significant yield are valuated and identified for donation or abandonment.