Jackie Hutter, who blogs over at IP Asset Maximizer, has published an new article (Improving Innovation ROI with Early Stage Patent Expertise) in which she apparently makes the case for including patent professionals early in the innovation process. The full article can be purchased for 11 Euro (or about $15 in “real money”). From the introduction:
… the absence of patent insights at an early stage frequently means that innovations are not properly scoped for potential infringement risk until significant efforts are expended, a fact which can further limit innovation ROI.
It follows that companies can realize financial benefits by including patent information at an early stage. A key to successful inclusion of patent information in early stage innovation processes is the realization that not all patent experts can operate in this environment and that corporate leadership must competently manage the situation.
I completely agree with Hutter, especially when she notes that “not all patent experts can operate in this environment.” Even yesterday, I commented that “most of the time, patents just cost a company money,” and for a lot of companies, that tends to be the case all of the time. But having a well-rounded IP strategy from the start can help companies focus investment on innovations that minimize business risk and maximize IP value. What’s more, this can be done in a way that minimizes any paper trail that might be used to suggest willful infringement. The problem, of course, is that most attorneys don’t do it that way.