Archive for 'Value Propositions'
Michael D. Moberly March 14, 2013 ‘A blog where attention span matters’.
As conveyed numerous times in this blog; underlying the stewardship, oversight, and management of a company’s intangible assets is board, c-suite, and management team recognition that practices must be in place to sustain (protect, preserve) control, use, ownership, and monitor asset value, materiality, and risk.
In my view, there are no particular priorities attached to these tasks (responsibilities) but, I’m increasingly confident that if any aspect is dismissed, overlooked, neglected, or otherwise does not occur, or fails, little else may matter, because asset value and the competitive advantages being produced/delivered will quickly be undermined, compromised, or stolen with asset value ‘going to zero’! And that readers, is attributable to the increasingly aggressive, globally predatorial, and ‘legacy free’ business transaction environment that is so prevalent.
To remedy or preferably prevent such calamities which can, in more instances than are publicly reported and understood, amount to financial catastrophes or collapses because they’re often irreversible and/or very costly for a victim company to return to a state of revenue generation normalcy and competitive advantage position. In other words, once intangible assets have been compromised, having available (or, at least knowing) an intangible asset risk specialist may be worth considering if not become a (fiduciary) requisite.
Should there be hesitancy, reluctance, or worse, the feeling of invincibility by company decision makers, it’s important to remember the global economic fact that 65+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, and ‘building blocks’ for growth, profitability, and sustainability today lie in – evolve directly from intangible assets! The compromise of one (key, contributory intangible asset) may well prompt adverse cascading (reputation risk) affects throughout an enterprise and its stakeholders.
To be sure, an intangible asset (risk) specialist, familiar with the ever expanding array of sophisticated, globally asymmetric, costly, and momentum stifling types of risks that adversely affect intangible assets when materialized, would bring measurable ‘ROI’ (benefits) some of which include…
- Developing a strategic plan to monitor asset risks, value, and materiality changes in accordance with assets’ respective value and functionality cycle.
- Adding predictability to business transaction outcomes, projected returns, and anticipated exit strategies when intangibles are in play and/or part of a deal by assessing their stability, fragility, defensibility, and vulnerability.
- Conducting specialized market entry and/or transaction due diligence assessments regarding the intangible assets in play, in both pre – post transaction contexts.
- Reducing the probability that project/deal momentum will be stifled by recognizing and mitigating circumstances that can (a.) ensnare and/or entangle the assets in costly and time consuming legal challenges, (b.) undermine/erode asset value and performance, (c.) adversely affect asset reputation ‘risk points’, i.e., product- service quality expectations of consumers and other stakeholders.
- Building an ‘risk intelligent company culture’ for intangible assets that converges with a company’s business objectives.
- Designing and executing comprehensive organizational resilience (continuity, contingency) plans that encompass mission critical intangible assets in order to preferably produce quicker recovery of asset value, revenue production, and market position, etc., following significant business disruptions or disasters.
- Monitoring (internal, external) intangible asset value chains, i.e., the inter-connectedness between the production, acquisition, and utilization of intangibles vis-a-vis their contributions to company value, revenue, and creating and sustaining competitive advantages.
- Providing on-going guidance to business units and management teams regarding effective stewardship, oversight and management of intangibles relative to identifying, unraveling, bundling, and extracting value and delivering competitive advantages.
The contributory value of intangibles (to company revenue, future wealth creation, and sustainability) continues to rise as intangibles have become increasingly integral to knowledge-intensive industries operating in global knowledge-based economies. These interacting economic and intellectual, structural, and relationship capital phenomena consistently put intangibles, quite literally, in play and, ‘at risk’ in most very business transaction and/or activity.
Each blog post is researched and written by me with the genuine intent they serve as a useful and respectful medium to elevate awareness and appreciation for intangible assets throughout the global business community.
Most of my posts focus on issues related to identifying, unraveling, and sustaining control, use, ownership, and monitoring asset value, materiality, and risk. As such, my blog posts are not intended to be quick bites of information piggy-backed to other sources, or unsubstantiated commentary.
Comments regarding my blog posts are encouraged and respected. Should any reader elect to utilize all or a portion of any of my posts, attribution is expected and always appreciated. While visiting my blog readers are encouraged to browse other topics (posts) which may be relevant to their circumstance or business transaction. I always welcome your inquiry at 314-440-3593 or email@example.com
Michael D. Moberly May 14, 2012
All too frequently the contributions’ intangible assets make to a company’s value and serve as sources of revenue are overlooked, neglected, or outright dismissed. Equally unfortunately, those attributes are often obscured by intangible assets’ (a.) lack of physicality, and (b.) not knowing precisely where and how intangibles ‘fit’ on balance sheets and financial statements, or even reported at all. Too, with equal frequency, the assets’ proprietary and competitive advantage features go unrecognized, un-protected, undervalued, or not valued at all.
I often characterize intangible assets to company management teams as being akin to the proverbial ‘hand in front of our face in a pitch dark room’. That is, they’re often developed internally, sometimes over time and embedded in a company’s routine operations, processes, and functions that, in many instances, fall under a management teams’ mba – tangible (physical) asset oriented radar. Just as frequently, company’s engage in HR functions and other types of business transactions in which the intangible asset components of either go unnoticed, unused, and seldom effectively exploited.
So, why, or how is it beneficial and necessary for company management teams, c-suites, and boards to acquire a familiarity with intangible assets now? And, how will such familiarity produce (translate as) multiplier effects and risk mitigators as the title of this post claims?
The key objectives are, of course, to position and exploit a company’s intangible assets in order to extract as much value and competitive advantage as possible throughout the assets’ value – functionality (life) cycle.
In my view, this occurs when management teams achieve two things:
- begin exercising consistent, effective, and sufficient stewardship, oversight, and management of their company’s intangible assets, as the basis for
- sustaining control, use, ownership, and monitoring the value and materiality of the assets
Other useful outcomes, i.e., risk mitigators and multipliers of effective and consistent (intangible) asset management include…
- Elevating transaction due diligence quality by (a.) recognizing how to rapidly identify, unravel, and safeguard valuable – revenue producing assets in (b.) both pre and post (transaction) contexts.
- Adding predictability to transaction outcomes by being able to recognize and assess asset (a.) stability, fragility, sustainability, and defensibility, and preferably mitigate risks, and (b.) relevance to achieving projected returns. competitive market position, anticipated synergies and efficiencies, and exit strategies.
- Reducing the probability intangible assets (and IP) will incur unnecessary risk, i.e., (a.) become entangled and/or ensnared in costly, time consuming, and momentum stifling legal challenges, (b.) that can erode and/or undermine asset value, performance, or competitive advantages.
- Providing a stronger foundation for aligning the utilization and exploitation of a company’s intangible assets with (a.) continuity-contingency plans, (b.) organizational resilience – risk management planning, and (c.) strategic business objectives.
- Contributing to building a ‘company culture that’is (a.) attuned to intangible assets, their value, and contributions to (company) sustainability and profitability, and (b.) treats intangible assets as business decisions, rather than solely legal or accounting processes.
- Strengthening the convergence of computer/IT security and intellectual property and intangible asset safeguards to achieve timelier awareness and pursuit of (IP) rights- ownership violations.
- Providing a foundation for more effective application of (a.) knowledge management initiatives, and (b.) balanced scorecard approaches.
While visiting my blog, you are respectfully encouraged to browse other topics/subjects (left column, below photograph) . Should you find particular topics of interest or relevant to your circumstance, I would welcome your inquiry at 314-440-3593 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Michael D. Moberly May 3, 2012
We can presume that a significant percentage of employees enjoy and likely receive some, albeit cathartic, satisfaction talking about their work. The array of on-line (social media) platforms that are readily available and through which people (employees) can converse about their work often times in substantial detail.
Most companies with even a modicum of understanding about the vulnerability and risks such open source conversations pose, endeavor to mitigate such risks and sustain the proprietary nature – trade secret status of designated information assets through restrictive covenants included in employment contracts, i.e., non-disclosure and/or confidentiality agreements or NDA’s and CA’s respectively. Exacerbating the open source social network posting phenomena of course, is how seasoned competitive analysts can derive actionable intelligence from these sources which, among other things may reveal a company’s plans, intentions, and capabilities, i.e., projects, launches, etc.,
Most NDA’s and CA’s I’ve seen however, are brimming with a myriad of do’s, don’ts, procedures, and potential sanctions to those who breach the now mandated confidentiality. While I’m confident they exist to the contrary, I see few NDA’s or CA’s that address the all-important ‘why this information warrants protection’ question. I’m suggesting including explanatory contractual language (in NDA’s and CA’s) directed to inquisitive twenty-something’s why certain company information must remain proprietary or secret should not be dismissed or overlooked. To be sure however, I’m not referring here to categories of information and/or data that are already mandated kept free from breaches, i.e., HIPPA or similar regulatory mandates.
For a generation of ‘twenty something’ employees who appear undaunted by regular postings of what preceding generations would characterize as personal, even perhaps private information, on their preferred social media platforms; answering the relatively simple question about why it’s important to safeguard particular (company held) information is, in my view, an overlooked and under-studied necessity.
Warranted or not, the proverbial twenty something’s have earned a reputation as being a primary source where information breaches are likely to emanate which I am inclined to believe and thus favor including a realistic answer in NDA’s and CA’s to the ‘why this information warrants protection’ question. I am not suggesting the answer be framed as a discussion or an option, rather a straightforward answer. One very viable and understandable answer to that question lies in…the economic fact that 65+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, and building blocks to achieve growth and sustainability evolve directly from intangible (mostly information-based) assets!
In other words, providing a sound(contractual-based) rationale for sustaining trade secrecy or its cousin, proprietary status, can, I believe, in many circumstances, will serve as an additional and probably equally effective risk management tool insofar as safeguarding a company’s valuable and strategic information assets.
I recognize that I am hardly the first practitioner to raise – frame the issue in this manner. But, I suspect, in this social media era, assuming a twenty-something employee fully appreciates the connection between signing an NDA during their employee orientation process and the (real and contributory) value of that information, which in most instances, they have yet to see, let alone access, is a fairly weak assumption.
I remain skeptical therefore, that employees who seemingly find it both acceptable and desirous to post what heretofore has justifiably been private (life) matters on their social media platforms will become information asset protection (security) zealots overnight. But, let’s be clear, this post is not about characterizing all twenty-something employees as being naive and potential-inevitable sources of information breaches or leaks
Ester Dyson, a re-known information technology consultant, once said on a related matter, that ‘the trick (to information asset protection) may not lie in trying to control the number of copies, or even the ability to copy for that matter, rather it may have more to do with influencing a relationship with originators and users of information’. For the 90+% of new and existing employees, whom studies assure us will never become an ‘information leaker’, I agree!
Michael D. Moberly April 26, 2012
This post is not about regurgitating the requisites for achieving a risk intelligent company, rather, its how to develop a sustainable risk intelligent ‘company culture’!
Unconventional approaches to risk management make sense today, says Rick Funston (Principal, Deloitte). Risk intelligence, he says, is the ability to effectively distinguish between two types of risks, i.e., the risks that must be…
- avoided (for a company) to survive, by preventing significant losses or harm, and
- taken (in order for a company) to thrive by gaining competitive advantage.
Risk intelligence, Stephen Wagner and Rick Funston state in their appropriately titled book ‘Surviving and Thriving in Uncertainty: Creating the Risk Intelligent Enterprise’ embodies the ability to translate the above distinctions into better and more practical business decision making and actions to improve company’s:
- resilience to adverse (risk) events/acts
- agility to recognize and take advantage of business opportunities in which some level of risk is present.
An initial and important step toward developing a ’risk intelligent company culture’ is recognizing that risk is not solely or exclusively an external phenomena, i.e., all risk does not originate outside a company.
According to Deloitte’s, The People Side Of Risk Intelligence: Aligning Talent And Risk Management, risk virtually touches every aspect of employee (HR) management, and therefore, employees affect virtually every aspect of risk management. That appears to be the makings of a fairly substantial value proposition basis for ‘kick starting’ a intelligent company culture.
So, a second, and equally important step toward achieving a risk intelligent company culture is recognizing that a company’s value can be favorably affected by integrating – merging risk management and human resource management. The rationale for doing this, in my judgment, is embedded in the reality that a significant percentage of (company) risks actually evolve from – are inherent to employee behaviors, attitudes, and actions, which includes, Wagner and Funston add, management teams and boards.
Effective risk management, the Deloitte report suggests, and I might add, a risk intelligent company culture, commences at the point in which the following converge, i.e.,
Risk Governance – how a company (a.) treats risk, (b.) whether and/or how it assumes responsibility for risk oversight, and (c.) how it incorporates (factors) risk in its strategic decisions and planning…
Risk Infrastructure Management – whether a company’s management team understands how to design, implement, monitor, and sustain an effective risk management program relative to the products or services produced and the type/nature, and locations of its business transactions…
Risk Ownership – whether a company’s employees and management team understands what their risk identification and mitigation responsibilities actually are, i.e., whether they internalize some) responsibility and/or assume some level of ownership for identifying, measuring, monitoring, and reporting risk…
In light of the economic fact that U.S. businesses lose an estimated 7% of their annual revenue to various forms of occupational fraud, notwithstanding losses attributed to intangible (IP) asset misappropriation, infringement, product counterfeiting, etc., a well-managed risk intelligent workforce can be a valuable (intangible) asset for any company.
A good starting point, say Wagner and Funston is to critically assess a company’s ‘unwritten rules’ relative to…
- what (employee) behaviors are actually being rewarded by applying these ‘unwritten rules’?
- do all employees, including management team and board, understand the company’s risk management priorities, objectives, and the strategic reasons behind them?
- are company – employee incentives aligned with the company’s risk management priorities?
In a risk intelligent company, management teams and boards assume an obligation to understand what the proverbial ‘unwritten company rules’, i.e., what they are and how they’re being interpreted-executed by employees. One does not have to look far to see the adverse consequences – effects on companies when there is a strong (under-the-radar) operational reliance on ’unwritten rules’ as to how things actually get done and how, or if, the risks associated with those ‘unwritten rules’ are being managed? So, analyzing the responses to the above questions insofar as how they may influence and/or perpetuate a company’s propensity to avoid or engage in risk taking is important.
Obviously then, becoming more intelligent (and objective) about the persistent, embedded, and asymmetric risks most companies routinely incur in a global-based economy and business transaction environment, is an important prelude to creating a risk intelligent company culture.
Management teams and boards, in my view, must assume a responsibility for elevating and cultivating a company-wide awareness of risk that fosters risk intelligent behaviors at all levels, which begins by:
1. adopting a common definition of risk that’s in accordance with national standards and best practices as well as being company specific.
2. clearly defining the roles, responsibilities, and authority (for managing and monitoring risk) with appropriate levels of transparency.
Lastly, it’s essential to recognize, insofar as developing a ‘risk intelligent company culture’ that (a.) a change in (company) culture generally follows a (employee) behavior change, and (b.) culture and behavior changes are less a product of formal risk policies, controls, and pronouncements, than they are the result of effective incentives and rewards.
This post was inspired by and adapted by Michael D. Moberly from a paper produced by Deloitte titled ‘The People Side Of Risk Intelligence: Aligning Talent And Risk Management’ and a fine book authored by Stephen Wagner and Rick Funston, appropriately titled ‘Surviving and Thriving in Uncertainty: Creating the Risk Intelligent Enterprise’.
Michael D. Moberly February 20, 2012
I am a firm believer that the introduction (presence) of security products, systems, and services in an environment produce – deliver intangible assets. Security products and procedures are common to building-environment design and operation, e.g., access control, intrusion detection, and CCTV systems, etc. Each produces sector-environment specific sets of intangible assets. Seldom however do those intangibles get translated or leveraged as premiums or competitive advantages by the vendor, building designer, or security department.
In many instances, these ‘feel safe, feel good’ attributes manifest themselves as user expectations but are not incorporated in security ‘buy in’ presentations or return-on-security-investment (ROSI) equations because, as intangible assets, they’re frequently poorly understood and lack an effective narrative to describe their contributory value.
In today’s increasingly security conscious and (security) standards driven environment, those considering openly espousing (leveraging) the attributes of security systems and procedures should recognize:
- legal counsel may caution such open/public displays because, by doing so, it may unduly influence user expectations, thus when risks do materialize, a company may subject itself to elevated liability exposures.
- intangibles lack physicality and thus are presumed to be too esoteric to promote as competitive advantages to prospective clients and users as premiums.
- intangible assets are routinely portrayed (reported) solely through accounting lens.
- some security practitioners hold the belief that public announcements about the presence-use of security measures and/or systems undermine their deterrent factors and thus compromise the intended (designed) benefits.
While these perspectives are understandable and real, they’re also uniquely challenging to refute. The result is, intangible attributes derived from security systems and products often go un-leveraged and ultimately dependent on individual user imagination to draw their own, albeit subjective ‘feel good, feel safe’ conclusions versus the value-added (risk management) premiums they are.
The economic fact that 65+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, sustainability, and foundations for growth evolve directly from intangible assets casts these circumstances in a different light.
Traditionally the dominant sources of company value and revenue have flowed from tangible – physical assets, i.e., plants, real estate, equipment, and inventory, etc. But, in today’s knowledge-based business (transaction) global economy the sources – origins of company value have shifted to intangible assets, i.e., intellectual property, proprietary know how, brand, reputation, image, and goodwill, etc. (For a comprehensive list of intangible assets see http://kpstrat.com/brochure.)
The phrase knowledge-based economy of course is a business-economic reality and certainly not merely a cliché relevant to only large firms. For building designers, security product vendors, and certainly users, this phrase should serve as useful insight into how user’s ‘feel good, feel safe, and feel secure’ expectations have evolved.
In my view, architectural design, vendor competition, and security ‘buy in’ presentations must include effective articulation of the relevance and value add – contributory value of security products, services, and procedures in the form of intangibles such as competitive advantage premiums which can be prudently exploited. Security and asset protection products of course, can deliver a broad spectrum of measurable client and user (intangible) benefits beyond conventional subjective risk-threat mitigation.
Building-environment design and security measures (products, systems, etc.) can converge. For example in a security product (vendor) presentation I recently witnessed, it was clear the product had multiple potential selling points and numerous venues where it could be applied. Unfortunately however, the products’ inventor either did not recognize or chose not to address in his presentation at all, the various and attractive ‘security intangibles’ his product could deliver.
Had this security product inventor – vendor had a narrative to characterize and strategically bundle the multi-dimensional outcomes, i.e., security intangibles, his product could also deliver its quite possible client receptivity would have been substantially elevated because their return-on-investment projections would have been more clear and much broader.
Michael D. Moberly February 8, 2012
I recently re-read Ranjay Gulati’s book ‘Reorganize For Resilience: Putting Customers At The Center Of Your Business’. It is not, in my judgment, just another of the myriad of books who’s author tweaks or critiques an existing standard or presents a highly nuanced alternative about the re-emerged importance of customer centricity.
Instead, it’s a book about recognizing a company’s customer relationships are intangible assets which can produce ‘relationship capital’. Gulati however, takes this important perspective several steps further. He suggests that in order for customer relationships to be as effective and profitable as possible, there needs to be (a.) consistent engagement, and (b.) high level inquiry with customers. These components, he adds, must collectively extend well beyond the often times siloed boundaries of a company’s products and/or services.
This important perspective prompts me to draw an analogy comparable to conducting intangible asset assessments for companies. A frequent revelation flowing from an assessment is that company management teams may not recognize or they may even be dismissive about the contributory value, competitive advantages, and efficiencies delivered by intangible assets that are routinely embedded in (their company’s) processes, practices, know how, and culture.
Intangible assets as we all know, and customer centricity I might add, lack a conventional sense of physicality. As such, neither is reported on company balance sheets or financial statements. This notable absence from conventional forms of performance measurement contributes no doubt, to the tendency for both to be neglected, overlooked, and often conceived as distanced abstractions, rather than the ‘in your face’ realities they really are!
In response Gulati suggests, if customers’ real needs continue to be unrecognized and unmet, this may influence them (customers-clients) to commence ‘commoditizing’ that company’s products and services. In other words, customers-clients may begin making (their) purchase decisions based primarily on price rather than having developed a personal connection to a particular company’s products and/or services.
In a similar vein, management teams and boards that assume their company’s brand (another form of intangible asset) standing alone, will serve as the perpetual or proverbial life saver, is an assumption Gulati points out, that no longer reflects the realities of a globalized market place that is filled with competing options, products and services. I would add to that, it’s a global marketplace that is aggressive, predatorial, and winner-take-all.
Thus, to compete more effectively, Gulati points out, companies must define themselves well beyond the characteristics of a single intangible asset, i.e., a brand, etc. Thus, being first to identify and address customer – client ’problem spaces’ represents a powerful and strategic intangible asset, offensive weapon if you will, that can produce value, create sources of revenue, and serve as distinctive and long lasting foundations for growth.
(Dr. Ranjay Gulati is a professor at the Harvard Business School with expertise in leadership, strategy, and organizational issues. His book, Reorganize for Resilience: Putting Customers at the Center of Your Organization (Harvard Business Press, 2009) explores how “resilient” companies—those that prosper both in good times and bad—drive growth and increase profitability by immersing themselves in the lives of their customers.)
Michael D. Moberly March 2, 2010
All value proposition statements (pitches) should be framed, sequenced, and articulated so that a management/leadership team audience will likely interpret-assess the subject matter and objectives similarly in terms of relevance, importance, usefulness, and application, etc., to them and their companies! Obviously, this represents a significant and relatively complex challenge to achieve in a time restricted ‘pitch’!
In addition, a value proposition statement should include:
1. a clear, believable, and understandable statement of the tangible – quantifiable results that will be delivered, i.e., the added value a client will - can expect to experience and when.
2. logical and evidence-based linkages – paths between the product and/or service being pitched and how it will favorably impact the audience’ business, i.e., benefits, returns, address unmet needs. etc.
Value proposition pitches that focus exclusively on intangible asset services must, in addition to the above, include statements to:
1. to influence management/leadership teams to acknowledge that a company’s intangible assets reach well beyond the conventional brand, reputation, image, goodwill, and IP.
2. to identify the mandated fiduciary responsibilities relative to managing, utilizing, protecting, and effectively exploiting a company’s intangible assets, i.e., Stone v Ritter, Delaware, 2006.
3. that give credence to the economic fact that 65+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, building blocks for growth and sustainability lie in intangible assets, and are not merely ’sound byte’ cliches, rather they’re business (economic) realities.
4. bring clarity and understanability to the reality that intangibles ’lack physicality’ by providing examples that minimize managerial skepticim and dismissiveness about the contributory and exploitative value of a company’s intangible assets.
A good ‘value proposition’ pitch for intangible asset services can also include insights reported in Accenture’s recent national study, i.e., ’50% of companies today rely on intangible assets and intellectual capital as their primary drivers of value, but only 5% (of the reporting companies) have internal controls, procedures, and processes in place for the stewardship, oversight, and management of those assets at the board and c-suite levels respectively!
Michael D. Moberly March 1, 2010
A ‘value proposition’ should, in as few words as possible, accompany every (new, existing) business initiative. It’s essential that a value proposition include, at minimum:
1. a clear – understandable statement of the tangible – quantifiable results and benefits that will be delivered (can be expected), i.e., the added value a client will experience and can use.
2. believable and logical (evidence-based) link(s) – path(s) between the product and/or service being pitched and how either will favorably impact a business, i.e., provide specific benefits and returns that meet a need.
Value propositions that are service (versus product) oriented though, may present particular challenges relative to how they’re framed, written, and presented. In my view, this is especially important when the (value proposition) service being pitched is describing benefits - returns that will accrue to company’s that identify, utilize, and exploit their intangible assets more effectively.
In these instances, it’s especially important ’to do the necessary homework’ which begins by not assuming the management/leadership team audience will be on the same page with respect to their orientation to intangible assets. I have found on numerous occasions that management/leadership team familiarity with intangible assets tends to be focused on the intangible assets they believe are relevant to their particular company, industry sector, and/or professional domain.
For example banker and investor orientations’ to intangible assets may logically be focused on lending and monetization issues, whereas the orientation of the management/leadership team of a knowledge (know how) intensive firm may be more focused on employees and intellectual capital matters, i.e., retention, etc.
A value proposition that is overly broad and includes an exhaustive range of intangible assets may not be particularly well received because the (management/leadership team) audience is primarily interested in determing what specific intangible assets affect their company/organization, and perceive anything beyond that as constituting unncecessary ’clutter’.
The challenge then, is to frame, write, and present a value proposition that respectfully allows management/leadership team audiences to recognize broader applications and more inclusive ranges of intangible assets (internally, externally) that (a.) have relevance to their company, and (b.) which their company can benefit and obtain returns.
Given the preferred brevity though, in terms of length and time to present a value proposition to an audience, the speed which that audience understands and recognizes the relevance, benefits, and returns (of intangible assets) are key!