Intellectual Ventures Management LLC emerged as one of the top patent buyers in the U.S. brokered market in the fourth quarter of 2016, after a year of sporadic buying activity from the patent licensing company, according to data reviewed by Bloomberg BNA.
Through two of its subsidiaries, the Bellevue, Wash.-based Intellectual Ventures escalated its buying activity by purchasing a total of 172 assets, compared with no purchases in the same period a year ago, according to data provided by Richardson Oliver Law Group LLP (ROL). ROL advises companies on patent acquisitions in the brokered market.
Intellectual Ventures’ activity on the brokered market declined last year when it bought no assets in the first and third quarters and made a small purchase of eight assets in the second quarter. Known for buying patents, charging companies to license its IP and suing them if they use it without permission, privately-held Intellectual Ventures is closely watched in the patent market.
After a funding round in 2013, Intellectual Ventures went on a buying spree in the brokered patent market in 2014 and 2015, buying 4,679 and 1,777 assets, respectively, according to ROL data. In comparison, it bought a total of 180 assets in 2016.
“Intellectual Ventures just hasn’t gone away,” Kent Richardson, an ROL partner said. “Anybody who was hoping that they would go away is going to be disappointed.”
Compared to previous years, though, Intellectual Ventures is now “much more selective in what they buy and their resources are limited,” Richardson said.