The Value of Intellectual Property

test_tubesAs Big Pharma can testify, protecting your intellectual property is important. The patents on a number of big-name drugs, including Avandia, Lipitor, and Plavix are set to expire in the next couple of years. The original manufacturers will lose their exclusive rights to produce these drugs, paving the way for generics manufacturers who can sell off-brand versions for less.

But even before a drug or medical device reaches blockbuster status, protecting intellectual property should still be a priority for developing companies. According to Kevin McCabe, Director in the Biotechnology/Chemical Group and in the Litigation Group of Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox PLLC, the successful company effectively captures, protects, and markets innovation. “Through patent protection,” states McCabe, “these companies have a way to maintain exclusivity and compete effectively against other companies in their industry or market segment.”

A strong IP portfolio can also increase the value of a company in the eyes of prospective partners. According to a 2008 article in Medical Device and Diagnostic Industry magazine, small to medium-sized medical device companies are often targeted for acquisitions that would benefit investors. A company may also discover partnership opportunities for combination products if its IP complements that of another company.

According to McCabe, companies may face a number of challenges when developing and licensing their IP. Cost cutting in times of economic uncertainty often leads to decreasing research and development budgets. Drafting and prosecuting quality patent applications can be difficult. Finally, recent litigations have increased the perception that patents have been devalued.

McCabe will lead a workshop on the subject of “Licensing and Intellectual Property” at the 2010 OneMedForum. The workshop will discuss how companies should prepare their IP for a successful partnering transaction, with a focus on best practices for building IP, conducting due diligence investigations, and presenting IP information in a way that best positions a company to its prospective partner. McCabe will work through the prism of a series of recent transaction examples to find what worked well and why, as well as mistakes that could have been avoided. The workshop will be of keen interest to executives at companies currently involved or contemplating entering into a partnering deal, as well as the investment community.

“Licensing and Intellectual Property” is scheduled for Wednesday, June 30, 2010 from 9:00-9:45 a.m. and 1:30-2:15 p.m. Additional information about this and other workshops at the OneMedForum New York 2010 conference can be found at http://www.onemedplace.com/forum/workshops.

For more information on the conference, including a list of presenting companies, visit www.onemedplace.com/forum.

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