Jim Malackowski, Chairman and CEO of Ocean Tomo
Jim Malackowski, Chairman and CEO of Ocean Tomo

Historians have a tendency to track eras. Whether it’s the dead ball/lively ball eras of baseball or the golden and silver ages of comic books, specialists in a field love to codify time periods long past. It helps us examine what the future may hold. And, at the ninth annual “Best Practices in Patent Monetization” seminar, Jim Malackowski of Ocean Tomo did indeed mark the past trends in the IP marketplace even as he mapped out the future.

Malackowski outlined eras such as the period of “Feudal Lords,” the “Rise of the Intermediaries” and the “Age of the Golden Rule,” as he tracked the progress of the IP marketplace from the 1970s to the 21st century. Then, he set out to explain how Ocean Tomo seeks to bring rationality to the marketplace, and how it has developed tools to do just that. 

The Ocean Tomo 300 consists of 300 companies selected on the quality of their patents. That index of 300 companies has outperformed the stock market for 15 years, Malackowski claims, and that is due to the data-driven analysis that is Ocean Tomo’s hallmark. In seeking to create the equivalent of a “credit score for IP,” the company analyzes data to predict which patents are the strongest and uses the resulting scores to make investment decisions.

Using this kind of data, Malackowski sees a great portential in a trading exchange for intellectual property. IPXI has started up such an exchange, and Malackowski sees the concept spreading to places like Hong Kong and Singapore, regions of the world where IP is treated far differently than it is in the United States.

Other future issues that Malackowski sees include challenges associated with 3D printing, and the impact it will have on intellectual property. He sees other trends, like the vertical disintegration of R&D, co-inventions and the rise of connected platforms as key to the future of IP. He cites figures that may be shocking: by 2017, 75 percent of innovation will come from crowd sourcing, and by 2018, 3D printing will result in a $100 billion loss to the manufacturing sector. 

Some of these trends are already taking hold, and some have yet to shake the IP space just yet, but when someone with Malackowski’s track record and wisdom weighs in on these matters, it’s important to stop and take note.


For more on IP as a business asset, check out the following:

The Dos and Don’ts of assembling an IP monetization team

Inside the collateralization of patents

USPTO taps AOL’s Sarah Harris as general counsel