How to Make Money From Your Invention (Chapter 10, Part 2) - Lessons Learned From Case Histories
Prosoco is in cleaning and protective products for the building, construction and restoration industry.
They were approached by ConcreteScience International, who were franchising their vacuum extraction equipment for cleaning concrete.
Prosoco liked the trademark and the product enough to form a new company, ConcreteScience Services of Kansas. They licensed the trademark because they felt the cleaning technology had a bright future.
The new company took a franchise and built a close relationship with ConcreteScience International. Prosoco was betting that the cleaning process and the trademark will grow to be a more valuable asset in the future.
Eskil Karlson invented and patented an improved ozone generator that makes ozonation a more affordable approach to sterilization. The benefits of ozone as a replacement for standard chlorine treatment are well known, but high cost was always a problem. Dr. Karlson formed Life Support, Inc., to commercialize the technology.
The technology was first licensed about 8 years ago, for the licensee to develop and commercialize the sterilizer market for the FDA approved ozone generator.
The results were not good and Life Support had to go to court to get back their licensed patent rights. About 6 years ago, an option for a potential license was concluded with another company, who also failed to perform.
In spite of these bad licensing experiences, the inventor is still promoting his technology and finding new applications for it. He would entertain licensing but is understandably more cautious.
The inventor is a scientist and readily admits that he did not know his licensees very well.
A large Asian multinational company with R&D and commercial interests in computers, electronics, power cells and related areas was involved in fundamental carbon nanotechnology R&D in the early 90’s, before the explosion of this effort worldwide.
They received key patents but they did not recognize the commercial value at the time and did not have a licensing or commercialization strategy in place. The patents lay dormant.
In subsequent years, work proceeded in academic, government and corporate research laboratories around the world. There was extensive patent filing of improvements as well as new technology advances aimed at commercial opportunities.
The company with the initial development lost out because of their indecisiveness.
The lesson from this case history is that early stage business development and implementation, including IP utilization, especially in emerging technologies, is essential.
This was from a discussion with a representative of a large engineering company. They were asked if they ever licensed from a small or independent inventor. The following is a quote.
“We have done only one deal with a small business or independent inventor. We have talked to a number of these people over the years but have found that either their technologies do not fit our needs, have significant problems, are at too early stage of development for us as an engineering company to take on or they have an exaggerated sense of value for their technology by not realizing it is only part of a larger system.”
The above engineering company bought the technology and with the help of the small company, they are licensing to others.
The lesson is to be aware of the problems confronting the small or independent inventor when trying to deal with a large company.
Congratulations… You have completed reading this special report “How to Make Money From Your Invention”. Now it’s time to put what you have learned into practice!
This information is presented for the general education of independent inventors by the Invention Patenting Group. The Invention Patenting Group makes no warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, apparatus, product, or process disclosed herein, or represents that its use would not infringe privately owned rights. Reference herein to any specific commercial product, process or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer or otherwise, does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the Invention Patenting Group.