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Curating a Portfolio

1% Patent – 99% Execution

Note: this is an excerpt from my book “Startup IP Strategy.” As we all know, business is usually 10% idea and 90% execution.  The successful companies rarely have the single best product on the market, but they do have successful execution. Startup companies – and any business with a new product – spend more time…

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Data Driven Patents

Note: this is an excerpt from my forth coming book “Startup IP Strategy.” The patent system requires that we look ahead and guess the future.  If we are right, there is a huge reward.  This process can be powerfully addictive, as it is the same psychology as lottery tickets. Patents are bets that the marketplace…

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The Entrepreneur and the Investor – the story of bad IP protection.

An angel investor will ask the entrepreneur “Do you have a patent?”  The next thing the entrepreneur does is run out and get a patent. Is this smart? Note: this excerpt is from my forthcoming book “Startup IP Strategy.” The calculus is simple to the entrepreneur: they think a patent will help to raise money,…

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Patents and Psychology – The Fear of Loss and the Lottery Ticket

The Fear of Loss A patent brings out weird psychology of entrepreneurs and investors alike.  They are their own worst enemy. Note: this is an excerpt from my forthcoming book “Startup IP Strategy.” From Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman, we learn that fear is 9x more powerful a motivator than pleasure. The notion…

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What to Consider When Filing Patents Internationally

Many entrepreneurs like to go after foreign filings.  The normal course of business is to file a PCT application, then enter “national phase,” typically about two and a half years later. (“PCT” means Patent Cooperation Treaty, often mistakenly called an “international patent application.”  The PCT is an agreement where almost all countries of the world…

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Patent Myths – “Broad Claims are a Good Thing.”

Inventors like to think that their patents are “broad” and somehow that is good.  It is not. The risks with broad patents are that they are more easily invalidated, but it is basically a sales pitch that patent attorneys use to make more money. Narrow patents are bad, too. (Learn more about this and other…

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Inventions Where BlueIron Does NOT Invest

There are some inventions where BlueIron will NOT invest. I see an obnoxious number of inventions and patents from startups. I estimate that I encounter 10-20 inventions per week lately, and many are not good candidates for us to invest. It is heartbreaking to say “no” to inventors where the invention does not seem to…

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So You Have A Patent? Now What?

For many entrepreneurs, life goes on. The nasty secret is that now that they have this new asset, they don’t know what to do with it. They spent a lot of money, time, and energy getting the patent, but struggle with the value of it.

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Why Startup Patents Are Doomed From The Start

Patents for small companies are fundamentally different from patents for large companies.  The decisions made – and skills needed – to develop the two are very different. There are several problems facing a startup company when getting patents.  The biggest problem: the skillset needed for a startup’s patents is not practiced in the conventional law…

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BlueIron is Changing the Legal Industry

BlueIron was formed in response to a weakness in the way patents are prepared.  My personal experience was that I needed a patent attorney’s advice and experience – and I paid for it – but he had continually refused to give it to me. It wasn’t until after I took the patent bar and began…

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