Go For Patenting To Rake In Moolah

Bangalore, Jan 30: | Updated: Jan 31 2004, 05:30am hrs
* In 1985 Texas Instruments was sitting on thousands of IPs, but revenues from them were 0. Today intellectual property licensing brings in revenues of $800 million for the company.

* Taiwanese companies which invested heavily and entered the US market with LCD products found that there were already licence holders for the technology in the US and the International Trade Commission (ITC) prevented them from selling in the US.

* One inventor who holds the patent for fundamental IVR (interactive voice recording - the voice-based menu on telephones) raked in over $240 million in licensing fees last year.

Relating real life incidents that could make or break futures of companies, Mr Nick Setty, lawyer from Jones Day, a law firm specialising in corporate law, recommended that Indian companies start looking at generating revenues from their IPs.

It was time for India to use patents as a weapon, the way the US did, to prevent others from doing business in the same area, he said, speaking at a conference on Emerging Trends in Intellectual Property Rights in Bangalore.

Indian companies will have to start filing international patents (software cannot be patented in India), and do it very carefully, starting with the wording of the application, Mr Setty said. For instance, if a patent for a table describes it as a horizontal member supported by four vertical members, then it does not cover tables supported on single columns.