Why Licensing Must Be Part of Your Start-Up Strategy
It doesn’t matter what type of start-up you are – product, service, or technology – your most valuable assets are your intellectual property. Your IP is the biggest part of your start-up value. It increases the likelihood of getting funding from investors or lenders because it gives you a sustainable competitive advantage, a greater chance of market success, and higher investor returns. Your long-term profitability and eventual exit from your start-up depend on your ability to protect, manage, and use it to propel your start-up into the marketplace.
In a recent study by MIT (http://news.mit.edu/) on the characteristics of successful startups, found startups with IP are more successful than those without IP. In particular, it noted that the success of startups with trademarks is five times higher, and those with patents are 35 times higher.
Other research studies also confirm that startups with IP are more attractive to investors, tend to grow faster, have more revenue options, higher valuations, and better exit opportunities.
In fact, many of the most successful companies use licensing as a big part of their go-to-market strategy.
- Bill Gates used it to build the worlds biggest software company
- Google used it to build the biggest internet search company
- IBM uses it to generate almost 25% of its total revenues
- Disney uses it to generate over 60% of its revenues
- Calvin Klein uses it to generate over 90% of its revenues
About the Licensing Toolkit
Whether you are still in development, getting ready to launch, looking to expand, or raising capital, your start-up must make licensing part of its core business strategy. How?
The fastest way is with The Licensing Toolkit for Start-ups. It includes all the key IP tools you need to protect, manage, and make money with your IP assets – both inside, and outside your core markets.
Inside the Licensing Toolkit are the key tools you need to organize, manage, and leverage your IP assets. By using these tools, you’ll increase your start-up value, find new opportunities for your IP, accelerate your time to market, and avoid the costly mistakes that doom many start-ups.
It will help you focus your internal resources so you can better manage your current IP assets as well as those in development. Most importantly, it will help you make sure you’re protecting and using your IP assets the right way, and alert you to any potential legal or financial risks.
The Licensing Toolkit includes the 6 core tools you need to organize, protect, manage,and strategically use your IP assets. Here’ a brief summary of each tool:
- The IP Inventory Worksheet and IP Protection Questionnaire: The IP Inventory will guide you in identifying and listing all your IP assets. It includes their protection status, how you are using (or not using) them, whether there are any potential risks, and steps you are taking to keep them protected. These worksheets help you quickly organize your IP, and create an inventory of your IP assets.
- The IP Strategy and Licensing Plan Worksheet: Your strategy details how you’ll manage, and protect your IP assets, and how they’ll be used to generate revenues and value for your start-up. For example, some common strategies include licensing out for more revenue, co-developing IP, increasing start-up value, or expanding internationally. The Licensing plan is your action plan. It focuses on the two main activities necessary to create a licensing deal: finding a company interested in your IP and convincing them of the commercial value a license will give to them. This one-page questionnaire helps you quickly create an IP Strategy and Licensing Plan with all the details including how you’ll make sure your IP stays intact, how you’ll license it, who’s the right type of partner, your key deal terms, and how you’ll market it.
- The Licensing Opportunity Analysis and Profile: A simple one-page “fill-in-the-blanks” template to quickly complete analysis and summary of your IP assets, and the licensing opportunity. Using the information from Step 3 – The Licensing Plan, you will drill down into your IP, focusing on what your IP does, why it’s better, the benefits it offers your licensing partners and a summary of the licensing terms. It also includes samples of templates you can use to create a summary of your IP licensing opportunity. This summary is the first information you’ll send a potential licensing partner.
- Licensing Partner Qualification Questionnaire: Use this one-page questionnaire to quickly qualify your licensing partners. It includes the four critical areas of information you must know about them so you can decide if they would be the right type of licensing partner. This is known as due diligence, and it’s basically the process of getting as much information as needed about your potential partner. The more you know about each other, the better you can figure out if the partnership makes sense.
- The Negotiating Checklist: While there are many ways to negotiate licensing agreements, certain parts are critical to the success of an agreement. This one-page checklist covering the 10 most important business terms for your licensing agreements. Fill it out before you start your negotiations and use it to guide you in negotiating these terms with your licensing partner.
- Key Terms & Conditions Questionnaire: Every license agreement is unique and should show the goals and expectations of both you and your licensing partner. While there are many ways to structure licensing agreements, this questionnaire breaks down the most important clauses which, if overlooked, can lead to a dispute with your licensing partner, or worse, loss of your IP rights. Use the questionnaire to guide you in working with a qualified attorney to help you structure the right kind of licensing agreement.
Licensing Strategies for Patents, Trademarks, Copyrights and Trade Secrets: Learn the different ways to license each type of IP and when to use these strategies.
No-Risk 60 Day Money Back Guarantee
Investing in Licensing Toolkit is an investment in your business. Your IP is your most valuable business asset and is critical to your growth and survival in today’s IP intensive marketplace. The Licensing Toolkit gets you thousands of dollars in experience licensing advice on how to protect, manage, and leverage your IP expand and grow your business. If you decide for any reason, it’s not for you, then email us within 60 days for a full refund. It’s that simple.