April 28, 2009

Who Licenses out Patents and Why?

I resonantly read a report on patent licensing from OECD called “Who Licenses out Patents and Why?”. The report is based on a study made on patentees in Japan and Europe and focuses on if they are licencing out their patents and if so why.

Main Findings
One of the main findings in the report is that it only is a limited number of the patent holders which actually license out their patents. The number is around 20% for European ones and 27% of Japanese companies license their patents to unaffiliated partners.

When it comes to what companies that license the report find that it is an U shaped curve with higher licensing with smaller and larger firms. This might be explained by that larger companies produce complicated products needing to license in technology and enter in to cross-license deals. Whereas the smaller companies need to outsource their technology to different manufacturers.

This might however not be totally consistent since the main reason for out licensing is to get revenue from the patents the company holds.

Johan Örneblad
(Follow me on Twitter.)

The report can be found here.
IAM Magazine Blog and The 271 Patent Blog have also written about the report.

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