The economic impact of intellectual property management – a case study of the IBM
Subject literature indicates the International Business Machines (IBM) as the uninterrupted leader in the number of patents obtained from United States Patents and Trademarks Office (USPTO), out of all enterprises and industries for over 25 years1, 2, 3. Since 1998, the IBM has conducted an internal business segment called Intellectual Property Management (IPM). How to design the IPM in a large enterprise in a profitable way? The article presents results of two research goals of this study. The result of the first goal was to create an original design of the IPM segment based on the IBM business experience. It was developed throughout many years of research. Given the interdependent environment of IBM, the complexity theory approach was used to achieve this goal. The second goal was to evaluate the dynamic change of the economic profitability of activities included in the IPM segment, and their impact on the total income of the whole IBM enterprise, over the entire research period 1998-2016. The created design of IPM segment is a new and significant help for managers dealing with the complex issues of intellectual property, which allows to achieve economic profitability of IPM in the large enterprises. The results of the second goal indicated that out of all IPM activities only custom development of intellectual property was the only driver of profit increase in the IBM. The final conclusion is that not all activities of IPM generated increasing dynamics in profit which must be taken into account while design own IPM.
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