How Can Intellectual Property (IP) Help Your Tech Business?

Share This Post

Understanding why intellectual property is important to a business is crucial for tech entrepreneurs, startups, and established enterprises looking to grow. Intellectual property, known colloquially as IP, encompasses a range of legal protections for creations such as patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets. 

In the tech industry, a strong IP strategy can give a competitive advantage, attract investors, and increase company valuation. It’s also integral to comprehensive financial compliance.

Thinking about using IP to expand your company’s market share? Keep reading to discover how to enhance different types of IP, their significance for tech firms, and how leveraging IP can propel business growth and success.

Introduction to Intellectual Property (IP)

Intellectual Property generally refers to intangible things people create using their brains or imaginations. These can include inventions, literary and artistic works, designs, symbols, names, and images used in commerce. 

For tech businesses, IP is a critical asset that includes patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets. Here are some more details on these types of IP:

  1. Patents: Legal protection for new inventions and technological innovations.
  2. Trademarks: Protection for brand names, logos, and other identifiers that distinguish goods or services.
  3. Copyrights: Safeguarding original software, code, and digital content.
  4. Trade Secrets: Protecting proprietary information such as algorithms, processes, and strategies.

Viewing IP as a tangible asset on your balance sheet emphasizes its importance—it’s not just an accessory; it can generate revenue. Valuing IP accurately is crucial for activities like mergers, acquisitions, and funding. Strategic management and valuation of IP empower tech firms to strengthen their competitive edge, attract funding, and optimize market positioning for sustained growth and stability.

Understanding Why Intellectual Property is Important to a Business 

In essence, IP gives companies runway for future innovation. This is true in every industry, from technology to entertainment. It’s a bit simpler to explain in terms of an entertainment company, though the truisms of IP’s significance carry over across verticals.

Consider a large entertainment corporation like The Walt Disney Company. Their IP, while a bit different from that of their technology-industry counterparts, includes stories, characters, movies, rides, toys, and more. Creating one type of IP, like a new character, can beget future iterations of that IP in the form of more films, merchandise, amusement park attractions, music, and beyond. 

Each of those forms of IP can then yield new versions of every other form, and so on. (In fact, this never-ending cycle was Walt Disney’s original corporate plan, as explained by Business Insider.) The breadth of Disney’s IP directly correlates with its audience size, financial gains, and appeal to potential investors.

The Walt Disney Company is a classic example of a business that has mastered the use of IP to maximize profits, investment opportunities, and brand recognition. Here are some details as to how IP can benefit your technology-industry company, too.

Competitive Advantage

IP protection helps tech businesses safeguard their innovative products and services, preventing competitors from copying or exploiting their advancements. This exclusivity enables companies to maintain a competitive edge in the market.

Revenue Generation

IP can be monetized through licensing agreements and royalties. By allowing others to use their patented technologies or trademarks, tech businesses can generate significant revenue streams, enhancing their financial stability.

Attracting Investment

Investors view strong IP portfolios as indicators of a company’s innovation and potential for long-term success. IP assets can significantly increase a company’s attractiveness to venture capitalists and other investors, facilitating funding and growth opportunities.

Market Positioning

A well-protected IP portfolio enhances brand value and market differentiation. Strong trademarks and copyrights help establish and maintain a company’s identity, fostering customer loyalty and recognition.

Types of IP and Their Relevance to Tech Businesses

Understanding the different types of IP and their specific applications is essential for tech businesses aiming to protect and leverage their innovations. Each type of IP offers unique protections and benefits that are vital for sustaining competitive advantage, securing brand identity, and fostering innovation. 


Patents are crucial for protecting technological advancements and inventions. They provide exclusive rights to the patent holder, preventing others from making, using, or selling the invention without permission. This protection is vital for encouraging innovation and ensuring that businesses can reap the benefits of their research and development efforts.


Trademarks protect brand identity, including names, logos, and slogans. Particularly in the tech industry, where brand reputation is paramount, trademarks help secure customer loyalty and trust. They distinguish a company’s products from those of competitors, playing a critical role in marketing and brand strategy.


Copyrights are essential for protecting software, code, digital content, and other original works. Since software and content are integral to tech businesses, copyrights ensure that creators maintain control over their works and can prevent unauthorized use or reproduction.

Trade Secrets

Trade secrets cover confidential business information that provides a competitive edge, such as proprietary algorithms, processes, and business strategies. Unlike patents, trade secrets do not expire as long as they remain undisclosed. 

IP Strategy and Management

Developing a robust IP strategy aligned with business goals is essential for maximizing the value of IP assets. This involves:

  1. Securing IP Rights: Filing for patents, trademarks, and copyrights, and implementing measures to protect trade secrets.
  2. Maintaining IP: Regularly reviewing and renewing IP registrations to ensure continuous protection.
  3. Monitoring and Enforcement: Vigilantly monitoring the market for potential infringements and taking necessary legal actions to enforce IP rights.
  4. Tax and IP Collaboration: Coordinating IP and tax strategies to mitigate risks, particularly during transactions like mergers or asset migration. This ensures optimal tax positioning and proper enforcement of IP rights, reducing audit risks and safeguarding against potential legal issues​.

IP Valuation and Its Role in Business Growth

Accurate IP valuation is crucial for activities like mergers, acquisitions, and securing funding. Believe it or not, IP assets can actually comprise a large portion of a business’s market value. Understanding the value of IP allows businesses to leverage these assets effectively, ensuring they are fully capitalized upon during key financial transactions and strategic initiatives.

Importance of IP Valuation

Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A): In M&A transactions, accurate IP valuation ensures that both buyers and sellers recognize the true worth of the intangible assets involved, leading to fairer negotiations and optimized deal structures. It can also uncover hidden value within a company, making it more attractive to potential acquirers.

Securing Funding: Investors and venture capitalists are more likely to fund companies that can demonstrate the potential economic benefits of their IP assets. Accurate valuation helps in presenting a compelling case to investors, showcasing the future revenue potential and strategic importance of the IP.

Strategic Planning: By understanding the worth of their IP assets, companies can prioritize their innovation efforts, manage their portfolios more effectively, and allocate resources to the most valuable projects. It also aids in identifying opportunities for licensing, joint ventures, and other collaborations that can further monetize the IP.

Methods for Valuing IP Assets

There are several methods available for valuing IP assets.

Cost Method: This approach estimates the value of IP based on the cost incurred to develop it. This includes research and development expenses, legal fees, and other costs directly associated with creating the IP. The cost method is straightforward but might not always reflect the market potential or future revenue-generating capability of the IP.

Market Method: The market method assesses IP value by comparing it to similar assets sold in the market. It relies on recent transactions for valuation benchmarks but requires access to reliable data, which can be challenging to obtain.

Income Method: This method values IP based on its projected future income or cash flows. By estimating these benefits and discounting them to their present value, businesses can gauge the IP’s potential profitability. It’s especially handy for assets like patented technologies or copyrighted software, crucial to a company’s revenue streams.

Case Studies

Successful IP valuation has significantly impacted many tech businesses, enabling them to secure substantial investments and achieve remarkable growth. For instance, Microsoft’s 2016 acquisition of LinkedIn was valued at $26.2 billion in large part due to LinkedIn’s software intellectual property. As explained by Alpha Week, this included the latter’s powerful network effects and data analytics algorithms. Within 5 years of the acquisition, Microsoft posted its first-ever $10 billion year. Furthermore, revenue from LinkedIn rose 46% in the same reporting quarter.

Another example of a successful IP valuation is Google’s 2005 purchase of Android, which gave the former entry into the smartphone operating system market. The purchase was huge for Google, helping the tech giant gain 69.75% of smartphone operating system market share and expand its OS offerings into smartwatches, tablets, smart televisions, and beyond. 

Objective’s Expertise in IP Valuation

Objective’s Valuation Practice has a comprehensive suite of services for IP asset management from tax advisory to financial reporting and strategic advisory. With expertise in valuing Intellectual Property for Tax Strategy, Objective helps companies capitalize on their intangible assets.

Success Stories

We’ve helped our clients achieve notable successes, with IP valuations leading to increased investment, successful acquisitions, and enhanced market positioning. 

For instance, ObjectiveIBV worked with an e-commerce clothing company struggling to find their footing in the marketing. The company felt that their products, shirts that featured sweat-wicking technology, were what set them apart. 

However, our team helped them to realize that in fact the lifestyle that they were selling (the freedom to pack just one shirt for traveling) was in fact their most valuable IP. Once this became apparent and the marketing plan shifted to better appreciate their real value to the consumer, the company’s sales skyrocketed.

In another case, ObjectiveIBV worked with a client that didn’t have a great sense of their sales history. The client assumed their RFPs and government contracts were generating great sales, but our analysis indicated otherwise. Once our team began to dig further, review the data, and learn from anecdotal information, we were able to steer the client toward contracts with more profitable valuations. 

Level Up Your IP Game with ObjectiveIBV

For tech businesses seeking to leverage their IP for competitive advantage, investment attraction, and business growth, ObjectiveIBV offers expert consultation and valuation services. Contact us today to explore how our IP valuation services can unlock your business’s potential and drive strategic success.



The above testimonials may not be representative of the experience of other customers and past performance is not a guarantee of future performance or success.

This news release is for informational purposes only and does not constitute an offer, invitation or recommendation to buy, sell, subscribe for or issue any securities. While the information provided herein is believed to be accurate and reliable, Objective Capital Partners and BA Securities, LLC make no representations or warranties, expressed or implied, as to the accuracy or completeness of such information. All information contained herein is preliminary, limited and subject to completion, correction or amendment. It should not be construed as investment, legal, or tax advice and may not be reproduced or distributed to any person. Securities and investment banking services are offered through BA Securities, LLC Member FINRASIPC. Principals of Objective Capital are Registered Representatives of BA Securities. Objective Capital Partners and BA Securities are separate and unaffiliated entities.

More Posts