Archive for 'Managing intangible assets'

Invention Commercialization Critical Questions Affecting Outcome

April 12th, 2014. Published under Intangible Asset Value, Intangibles as strategic assets, Managing intangible assets, Uncategorized. No Comments.

Michael D. Moberly    April 12, 2014   ‘A long form blog where attention span really matters’.

Often, the unrecognized and under-valued intellectual and structural capital initiators to intellectual property rich corporate – university R&D collaborations are the  numerous intangible asset underliers, i.e., intellectual and structural capital which inevitably play a significant role in an invention and/or technology transfer initiatives, in general.

But, when the stewardship, oversight, and management of an invention’s (IP’s) contributing – supporting intangible assets are neither acknowledged nor safeguarded, at the outset, those asset’s value, competitive advantages, value, and sources of revenue which they may have the potential for producing for their holder can quickly be undermined, substantially diminished, or even ’go to zero’!

To avoid or substantially mitigate the vulnerability, probability, and criticality which such asset risks will materialize, I find a quick, but effective, project-wide (self-) assessment is useful.  The assessment consists of eight managerially focused questions with each designed to respectfully influence R&D project leaders, inventors, researchers, and technology transfer – commercialization teams to genuinely reflect on how, whether, and to what degree the key – relevant intangible asset initiators have, thus far, been managed, utilized, and safeguarded.

Admittedly, a rather transparent agenda to this assessment is elevating (managerial) awareness and operational familiarity with the economic fact that 80+% of most invention’s, and eventually startup and/or spin-off company’s value, projected sources of revenue, and ‘building blocks’ for successful (asset) commercialization evolve directly from the initiating – supporting (underlying) intangible assets, not IP per se.

An unfortunate, but persistent reality (risk) is that intangible assets can quickly become mired in costly, time consuming, and momentum stifling challenges and disputes or become subject to misappropriation or infringement if left unacknowledged, or negligently meld into the public domain – open sources.  As suggested, when either occurs, the asset commercialization potential (of these intangible assets, including the IP itself) can be irreversibly lost or, at minimum, severely obstructed in their contributory role.

The assessment…

I routinely find clients can complete this assessment in 7-10 minutes.  Readers are encouraged to not infer the speed in which the assessment can be completed and its brevity, i.e., seven questions minimizes its significance and benefits.  In framing this (self-) assessment I recognize that more comprehensive assessments do not necessarily produce – influence superior or more genuine (personal) reflection that translates to action and more profitable outcomes, particularly with respect to the oversight, management, and status of the key (most critical and contributing) intangible assets.  Too, I am respectfully, and humbly confident the assessment itself, as well as each of the nine questions can echo throughout an enterprise to the point they become routine discussion and action items in conference rooms, board rooms, technology transfer offices, and particularly amongst the scientists, researchers, and inventors who stand to benefit from effective and consistent stewardship, oversight, and management of the research they initiated.

Seven critical questions affecting invention commercialization outcomes…

As corporate – university R&D project management teams engage the assessment questions below they are encouraged to recognize that intangible assets, primarily in the form of intellectual and structural capital are not always specific to a single invention.  Instead, they may ultimately become initiators – underliers to other projects as well as being integral to most every stage of the instant invention process, i.e., at the (a.) idea formation stage, (b.) invention and product development stage, and (c.) commercialization (technology transfer) stage.

Assessment questions…

  1. Are intangible assets consistent discussion (action) items in management team meetings?
  2. Can research project management teams and the relevant inventors distinguish – or find consensus about the specific intangible asset(s), i.e., intellectual, structural capital, emanating from the initial research, and now have measurable contributory value to the product being proposed for commercialization to create sources of revenue, competitive      advantages, reputation, market space, etc.?
  3. Are project managers – management teams maintaining an inventory (audit) of the contributing (underlying, supporting) intangible assets that emanate from and/or drive the invention/commercialization process?  If so, are those processes being regularly re-assessed, updated?
  4. Do the inventory-audit updates specifically include an assessment of how, whether, or which intangible assets sustain value, materiality,  relevance, and mitigate risks to the invention itself, the  commercialization process, and the inevitable spin-off – startup company’s core mission and strategic planning?
  5. Have invention commercialization project managers identified which (contributing) intangible assets hold the highest probability for investor attractivity, value, and sustainability, price points, fees, royalties, etc., if they were sold, licensed, or used in a strategic alliance and/or joint venture?
  6. Have invention commercialization project managers and inventors identified which invention relevant intangible assets, particularly      intellectual and structural capital are most vulnerable to risk, e.g., pre and post commercialization, technology transfer, and business transaction to infringement, misappropriation, premature leakage, counterfeiting,  etc.?
  7. Have invention commercialization project managers implemented an organizational resilience (continuity – contingency) plan that specifically includes (a.) contributory intangible asset risk/threat mitigation, and (b.) rapid recovery from the adverse impact of materialized risk(s)?

In sum, are there processes – procedures in place, with respect to the invention commercialization process to…

  • ensure mission critical (intangible) assets hold (their) value, deliver revenue, or remains relevant to the spin-off company’s core mission and strategic plan, and
  • remain aligned with the development and/or acquisition of additional intangible assets necessary to achieve the inevitable spin-off company’s core mission, and strategic (market) planning?
  • identify who is responsible and how will such responsibilities will be executed regarding the on-going management, monitoring and measurement of intangible asset performance relative to sustaining – enhancing company value, sources of revenue, competitive advantages, reputation, etc.

Reader comments and inquires are always welcome at 314-440-3593 (St. Louis) or m.moberly@kpstrat.com 

 

Protect, Preserve, and Monitor Intangibles

March 27th, 2014. Published under Intangible asset training for management teams., Managing intangible assets. No Comments.

Michael D. Moberly    March 27, 2014   ‘A long form blog committed to elevating awareness about intangible assets and where attention span really matters’.

As readers know well, it is an economic fact that intangible assets collectively represent 80+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, as well as serve as ‘building blocks’ for growth, profitability, and sustainability. It’s certainly not much of a leap in thinking then to recognize that key factors to effectively manage each of the above lies in company decision makers’ ability and commitment to…

  • protect, preserve, (sustain), profitably utilize, and monitor any fluctuations in the assets’ ‘contributory value’ which is variously dependant on
  • identify, prevent, and/or mitigate current and horizonal risks – threats which if – when they materialize, will, with little doubt, impair company growth, profitability, reputation, competitive advantage, and strategic planning.

In my view, one, if not the very first thing company decision makers should recognize is that, unlike patents, trademarks, or copyrights, which are conventional forms of intellectual property enforcement, there is nothing comparable issued by the government, or otherwise that says, ‘these are your intangible assets’.  Doing so, is entirely the (fiduciary) responsibility of company management teams, that is, to acquire that know how independently or secure the services of an intangible asset strategist and risk specialist for strategic counsel and training.

Position business decision making to include the following…

  • shift knowledge-based (intangible) assets away from being conceived and engaged as predominantly legal functions and/or processes to business management – decision functions and processes.
  • align intangibles with economic, financial, and risk management planning, core business strategies, specific transactions, and the assets’ value – life – functionality cycle
  • avoid costly and time consuming challenges over control, use, and/or ownership of their intangibles including misappropriation, infringement, and counterfeiting and other vulnerabilities that can lead to asset compromise and/or undermining.
  • counter the expanding global risks and threats which when materialized, impede business momentum, delay or undermine transactions, competitive advantages, and erode asset value and performance.

Objective: bring managerial, business, strategic, and economic clarity to under-the-radar intangibles, i.e.,

  • find’em, unravel’em, protect’em, preserve’em, defend’em, monitor’em, and enhance’em…
  • the stewardship, oversight, and management of intangible assets
  • monitor their value, risks, threats, and materiality

Distinguish intangible asset value…

  •  objective vs subjective value
  • what’s the difference, why it’s important, and how can it be applied

Valuation of intangibles must be much more than mere snap-shots-in-time…

  • business worth model
  • market approach
  • income approach
  • cost approach – substitutions

Recognize circumstances in which intangible asset value can/will fluctuate…

  • developmental and/or operational stage (value)
  • market value
  • industry (consumer) cycles

Recognize intangible asset value can be instantly undermined by…

  • premature disclosure, leakage, misappropriation, theft
  • entanglements and challenges over origin, control, use, and/or ownership
  • global business intelligence and data mining
  • counterfeiting, economic espionage

Recognize ‘rules’ for sustaining profitability and defensibility of intangible assets…

  • don’t assume no one is interested in the know how you’re producing
  • do assume your know how will be consistently targeted beginning at the earliest stages of its development and throughout its life – value cycle
  • do develop ‘best practices’ to protect, preserve, and monitor its value

Reader comments and inquires are always welcome at 314-440-3593 (St. Louis) or m.moberly@kpstrat.com

Inventors, Inventions, Intangible Assets!

March 14th, 2014. Published under Intangible asset training for management teams., Intangible Asset Value, Managing intangible assets. No Comments.

Michael D. Moberly     March 14, 2014     ‘A long  form blog where attention span really matters’!

A starting point to achieving success!  Whether you are part of a management team for a start-up, university-based research spin-off, or a young and still maturing firm built around a single invention, acknowledging and engaging the often multiple intangible assets embedded in that invention is an essential piece to the broader (strategic) puzzle for achieving commercialization success.

But first, as I often do here, let’s start with the unwavering economic fact that today, 80+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, and ‘building blocks’ for growth, profitability, and sustainability lie in or evolve directly from intangible assets! And, that percentage is likely to be substantially higher for early stage endeavors.

To serve as a strategically viable path to best achieve that desired end, I have compiled a series of essential questions which of course are related to the intangible assets most every invention produces as potentially ‘commercializable’ by-products.  Respectfully, I encourage readers (inventors) to avoid assuming these questions need only be asked or answered once and then pushed aside so presumably more important issues can be addressed related to make a start-up an on-going and viable concern.

Instead, the questions I have framed below should be periodically or even routinely re-visited.  My rationale is, acknowledging and effectively utilizing intangible assets which inhabit most every firm and frame its culture from inception, particularly intellectual, structural, and relationship capital and reputation will rapidly manifest, with the proper stewardship, oversight, and management, to become the keys to not just the commercialization success of a single invention, rather serve as ‘building blocks’ for a firms’ growth, profitability, and overall sustainability.

So, here are questions which business management teams and decision makers should be repeatedly asking.  For a list of intangible assets please see http://kpstrat.com/blog/?p=2594.

  1. Are intangible assets consistent discussion (action) items in management team meetings?
  2. Do inventors’ – management teams know what percentage of contributory value (of their invention) lies in or evolves directly from intangible assets?
  3. Can inventors site specific and/or additional intangible asset(s) emanating from their research (invention)?
  4. Can inventors describe specifically how that - those assets will contribute to the inventions’ value, projected sources of revenue, and competitive advantages, i.e., commercialization?
  5. Is an inventory and/or audit of the contributing intangible assets driving and/or emanating from the invention being maintained, regularly assessed, and updated?
  6. If so, does the inventory-audit include an objective assessment of how, whether, or which contributory intangible assets continue to hold value, materiality and relevance to the invention and its inevitable spin-off company’s core mission and strategic plan?
  7. How are the inventions’ contributing intangible assets being managed, i.e., sustain control, use, ownership and monitor their value, materiality, and risk?
  8. Can you objectively assess which (contributory) intangible assets hold the highest investor appeal – attractivity, or market value, etc., if bundled, sold, licensed, or used in a separate strategic alliance and/or joint venture?
  9. Can inventors objectively identify which invention-related intangible assets are most vulnerable to risk, i.e., infringement, misappropriation, premature leakage, counterfeiting, etc.?
  10. Is there an organizational resilience (continuity – contingency) plan in place that specifically includes contributory intangible asset risk/threat mitigation and rapid recovery from the adverse impact of materialized risk(s)?

Reader comments and inquires are always welcome at 314-440-3593 (St. Louis) or m.moberly@kpstrat.com.

Intangible Assets, Know What You Don’t Know and What You Need To Know!

March 13th, 2014. Published under Intangible asset training for management teams., Intangibles as strategic assets, Managing intangible assets. No Comments.

Michael D. Moberly    March 13, 2014    ‘A long form blog where attention span really matters’!

Admittedly, the title of Michael Roberto’s book “Know What You Don’t Know, How Great Leaders Prevent Problems, Before They Happen”, may appear to some, at least initially, as having virtually nothing to do with intangible assets.  I respectfully beg to differ!

There are numerous facets of Dr. Roberto’s book which, for me, merge well with any business – management team decision-making processes for putting a company’s intangible assets to work insofar developing and exploiting them to create new  – additional sources of value, revenue, competitive advantage, etc.

But, before we get too far, let’s not overlook an important economic fact – business reality, which is, 80+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, and ‘building blocks’ for growth, profitability, and sustainability today lie in or directly evolve from intangible assets!

So, for example, Chapter 1 of Roberto’s book is relevantly titled “from problem solving to problem finding”.  It commences with, what I believe, is a very apropos quote from G.K. Chesterton, and English author and theologian, which I slightly paraphrase here, i.e., “it isn’t that management teams can’t see the solution, rather it’s that they often can’t see the problem”.  The problem not seen, in my view, resides in overlooking and/or dismissing intangible assets as comprising the real sources of most company’s value, revenue, and competitive advantage.

Roberto makes numerous other, equally introspective points throughout his book which I translate as being relevant to my, and other intangible asset strategists’ objective, which is for intangible assets to become routine discussion – action items on c-suite and management team agendas.  Another example Roberto conveys, which is the effective theme of his book, lies in the necessity to move ‘from problem solving to problem finding’.  That is, for a substantial percentage of companies globally, the intangible assets their employees and business practices routinely produce frequently come to be embedded in most every business function, operation, and transaction.

However, for various reasons, many of which have been addressed here previously, company’s intangibles remain unrecognized or, at least, not exploited to the level possible, even though most business processes and/or transactions are routinely and substantially underwritten by intangible assets. So, for companies in which intangibles remain unrecognized or under-utilized as contributors to value, sources of revenue, and profitability, this should constitute in any management teams’ thinking, significant ‘business problem’ that warrants management teams  collective efforts to find and solve!

In the increasingly intangible asset rooted global economies and business transaction environments, recognizing how management teams can effectively and efficiently find and solve problems, merely by recognizing, developing, and exploiting (their) intangible assets, particularly those related to sustaining – enhancing profitability, market share, competitive advantages, value, revenue sources, reputation, brand, etc.,  is a strong example of moving ‘from problem solving to problem finding’.

Management teams that continue to disregard and dismiss the contributory value of their intangible assets, while it may not be ‘the’ problem, it is certainly ‘a’ problem’ And, its resolution does not require pouring over extraordinary amounts of information nor the extensive use of expensive resources or personnel time to effectively achieve.

Again, as readers know, one, time honored starting point for solving most any problem is by recognizing a problem exists, i.e., ‘finding the correct problem that warrants resolution’. From my experience, an example of finding the not a problem is seldom realized through a single seminar, conference presentation, or published article authored by a subject matter expert.  Rather ‘problem finding’ is rooted, in my view, through introspection, which unfortunately, in the go fast, go hard, go global context which many executives and management teams have assumed, they argue leaves little time for.

Extracting ideas from a respectfully non-descript book which Roberto has authored versus the airport bookstore business books which are consistently framed in a ‘ten easy and quick steps to…’, represents a real and viable strategy for remedying this particular problem, that is management teams ‘finding and solving the problem’ through unlocking their intangible assets by adding, if you like, an anthropological and ethnographical approach to one’s repertoire of managerial expertise.

For example, an ethnographer would observe and identify a firms’ producers – developers of intangible assets from a ‘shop floor’ perspective, i.e., in their natural settings, wherever that may be.  In other words, ‘finding the problem’ means avoiding merely asking employees how things are going, or relying on survey data or focus groups as the dominant sources of insight (problem finding).  Instead, management teams should be obliged to actually observe what employees do, i.e., their tasks,  processes performed, and internal – external interactions, etc., in a manner comparable to an anthropologist.  That is, engage and observe how employees, customers, clients, and suppliers, etc., actually behave and interact.

Doing so, leads not only to ‘problem finding’ through recognition and appreciation for the intellectual, structural, and relationship capital (intangible assets) that are woven into each.

Conducting this level of observation through the lens of an anthropologist and/or ethnographer, management teams can become more effective ‘problem identifiers’ with a particular adeptness at distinguishing – analyzing the contributory value of intangibles without the interference of  potentially misleading or over analyzed data that, in turn, can produce biases and preconceptions that may serve to taint what it is to be achieved.

Too, making these observations through an intangible asset lens, management team members are (a.) better positioned to not just identify what and how intangible assets are being used, (b.) if they are being used effectively, and (c.) which, if any, intangible assets need to be developed further or acquired and ultimately integrated to make a company’s processes more effective, efficient, and profitable.

This post was inspired by Michael A. Roberto’s book ‘Know What You Don’t Know…How Great Leaders Prevent Problems Before They Happen’, Wharton School Publishing, 2009.

 Reader comments and inquires are always welcome at 314-440-3593 (St. Louis) or m.moberly@kpstrat.com.

Intangible Assets Achieve Operational Familiarity

March 11th, 2014. Published under Fiduciary Responsibility, Managing intangible assets. No Comments.

Michael D. Moberly   March 12, 2014      ‘A blog where attention span matters’.

Management team’s fiduciary responsibilities now include taking consistent and affirmative steps to sustain control, use, ownership, value, defensibility, and potential monetization – commercialization of intangible assets.

Too, it’s becoming somewhat common, that at least one aspect of assessing the effectiveness of senior management team members is by how well they engage in the stewardship, oversight, and management (S.O.M.) of company intangible assets.  When such, usually board level, assessments occur, areas assessed (examined) include effectiveness in…

  • capturing, exploiting, and converting intangibles to enhance company value, create sources of revenue and strategies to sustain future growth.
  • strengthening and building competitive advantages by creating environments in which employees (peoples) relationship, intellectual, and structural capital are being maximized and effectively utilized.

In my view, there’s solid rationale for incorporating the S.O.M. of intangible assets in personnel performance assessments. For one, intangibles are the undisputable dominant driver of most company’s economic and competitive advantage health and value.  If (when) they are dismissed or neglected by company management teams, there is a substantial probability that such initiatives as new project launches, competitive advantages, marketing programs, and strategic planning will be stifled, undermined, or certainly less than their potential, with asset value eroding quickly or ‘going to zero’!

Conventional financial statements and balance sheets do not provide management teams, c-suites, and boards with a complete or necessarily clear picture of a company’s fiscal soundness.  This is especially relevant in today’s increasingly knowledge (intangible asset) dominant business (transaction) global economy in which it’s an economic fact that 65+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, and ‘building blocks’ for growth, sustainability, and profitability lie in – evolve directly from intangible assets.

So, management teams continued (perhaps sole) reliance on conventionally framed financial statements that are absent direct reference to intangibles.  This circumstance unfortunately contributes to minimizing the importance of intangibles and further contributes to a sense, among some management teams, of skepticism and dismissiveness about the necessity to acquire operational familiarity with intangible assets well beyond merely goodwill!

True enough, conventional financial statements describe whether or not financial targets are being achieved, etc. In that context, they remain relevant, but they simply don’t convey the whole story (picture) about a company’s status or its’ potential with respect to the production and exploitation of intangible assets.

Too, in fairness, conventional financial reports were not designed to capture qualitative aspects and/or what we now know more specifically today as vital signs – indicators related to businesses success and sustainability, particularly those found in – emanating from company’s intangible assets.

Today however, monitoring – measuring the performance of a company’s intangible assets is neither a time – resource luxury applicable only to Fortune ranked companies. Rather, those activities are a necessity and fiduciary imperative for most all firms, including SMM’s (small, medium multinationals) SME’s, (small, medium enterprises), start-up’s, early stage companies, and university-based spin-off’s.

The prudence of striking a better balance between the stewardship, oversight, and management, of tangible vs. intangible assets can produce positive benefits and multipliers that can favorably cascade throughout an enterprise.

There are numerous factors in play today that should be influencing management teams to pay more attention to (intangible) asset monitoring as indicators of performance and contributory value irrespective of company size, maturity, or industry sector.  These factors include, among others…

  • increasingly aggressive, competitive, and predatorial global competition.
  • the growing connection between a company’s intangible assets, stakeholders, value-supply chain, profitability, and sustainability.
  • a heightened respect for the risks to and value of a company’s reputation (image, goodwill).
  • accelerated innovation, product development, and launch times.
  • the geographically boundary-less speed which information (intangible assets) can be developed, acquired, and disseminated.
  • increasing government regulatory emphasis (globally) on reporting and measuring (accounting for) the value, performance, and materiality changes of intangible assets.

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 m.moberly@kpstrat.com

Intangible Assets Responsibility To Engage!

May 7th, 2013. Published under Intangible asset training for management teams., Managing intangible assets. No Comments.

Michael D. Moberly    May 7, 2013    ‘A blog where attention span matters’! 

Asset risks can materialize instantaneously, sequentially, and simultaneously and rapidly cascade throughout an enterprise to produce long lasting, and with increasing frequency, permanent adverse economic (competitive advantage) effects, so, in today’s increasingly predatorial global business environment….

First, the responsibilities associated with safeguarding (preserving use, ownership, and monitoring value, materiality, and risk to intangible assets are now akin to fiduciary responsibility (Stone v. Ritter).  They should not be construed as merely constituting new business jargon or optional tasks that can be dismissed or neglected, i.e., it will get done as time permits, when the resources become available, or when competitors do it.

Second, in today’s increasingly ‘flat world’ (Thomas L. Friedman) in which R&D, global business transactions, and company operations are routinely conceived, shaped, driven, and executed by the interconnected flow of data and information, i.e., intangible assets, it makes it all the more important that management teams converge their expertise to ensure the intangibles that are in play, are effectively safeguarded and positioned to realize the economic and competitive advantage benefits which they are capable of delivering without succumbing to risks, challenges, or other forms of asset compromises.

To better enable this, practices, processes, and strategies must be in place, along with a (enterprise-wide) culture that recognizes and appreciates intangible assets, and possess levels of alertness and skill to sustain sufficient control of and monitor key assets’ value, materiality, and risk.

Third, the time frame(s) when most companies can realize the greatest value from their increasingly intangible asset intensive products and services continues to erode, variously due to…

  • the abbreviated value and functionality cycles’ of intangible assets.
  • the absence of (conventional) market entry barriers and enforceable intellectual property law which allow for…
    • global cadres of ‘instantaneous’ competitors and infringers, and
    • extraordinary profits gleaned from (intangible) asset theft, infringement, piracy, and counterfeiting operations that pollute legitimate supply chains.

Fourth, intangibles’ development, acquisition, and utilization must be aligned with core business (and security and risk management) strategies rather than being considered primarily as intellectual property-based legal processes and/or decisions. That’s because, conventional forms of intellectual property enforcement, patents primarily…

  • no longer serve as deterrents, safe harbors, or consistent indicators of asset (company) value.
  • can advance a company (economically, competitively) only so long as a company can sustain unchallenged – undisputed use, ownership, and value, of its IP.
  • are relatively easy prey (vulnerable) to global networks of legacy free players and increasingly sophisticated entities engaged in predatorial data mining, business/competitor intelligence operations and economic espionage.

Fifth, safeguards for intangible asset intensive firms and transactions can be best addressed not solely through legislative mandates which, while generally being politically well-intentioned, are often unenforceable on a global scale, particularly in regions with highly country-centric IP and technology transfer law.  Rather, effective intangible asset safeguards are a product of real attitudinal and operational adjustments in a company’s outlook, strategic thinking and planning coupled with a strong recognition that key intangibles, particularly those linked to ‘operational know how’ are highly sought after globally, and therefore consistently at risk.

Sixth, it’s virtually impossible today to engage in any type of business activity or transaction in which intangible assets are not in play and integral to achieving a favorable outcome. Ultimately then, the line between a company achieving profitability and fighting for its financial survival is now more closely linked than ever before, to its ability to

  • identify, mitigate, and safeguard against risks to its intangible assets ranging from disputes, challenges, theft, infringement, or other forms of (asset) compromise while simultaneously extracting – exploiting value and converting intangibles into sources of revenue.

Indeed, intangibles have become embedded in even the most routine business operation and/or transactions. Absent this acknowledgment, the result is often that substantial asset value, competitive advantage, company reputation, and market space may be irreversibly lost, undermined, or er

Each blog post is researched and written by me with the genuine intent it serves 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  unsubstantiated commentary or information piggy-backed to other sources.

Comments regarding my blog posts are encouraged and respected. Should any reader elect to utilize all or a portion 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 m.moberly@kpstrat.com

 

ode.

 

Intangible Asset Roadmap

April 29th, 2013. Published under Intangibles as strategic assets, Managing intangible assets. No Comments.

Michael D. Moberly    April 29, 2013       ‘A blog where attention span matters’.

It’s really quite straight forward, embedded in the economic fact – business reality that increasing percentages of company value and revenue lie in – evolve directly from  intangible assets, management teams, boards, and other business decision makers, regardless of a company’s size, the location of its headquarters’, its maturation, its receptivity to being innovative and forward looking, or industry sector(s) it serves, its quite likely that a practical and viable roadmap for (a.) putting intangible assets to work, and (b.) preserving their (contributory) value and competitive advantages will be beneficial.

Such a roadmap, particularly the type that I advocate which includes ‘putting intangible assets to work’ for a company, starts, in my view, with (a.) the misnomer that intangible assets are synonymous with intellectual property, i.e., patents in particular, and (b.) re-framing the perception that the management, stewardship, and oversight of a company’s intangible assets fall exclusively to the legal and accounting domain.

Let’s be clear, most, if not all decisions and actions related to intangibles assets are and should be business decisions, preferably in collaborative concert with the c-suite, security, risk management, legal counsel, and accounting.   Too, as articulated by a Delaware court in Stone v Ritter, they can also assume a fiduciary responsibility that includes (a.) having consistent operational familiarity, and (b.) preserving their control, use, ownership and monitoring value, materiality, and risk.

Let there be no misunderstanding, the (effective) management, stewardship, and oversight of a company’s intangible assets has permanently shifted from merely being optional tasks and/or ‘nice to have’ processes, to, as noted above, something akin to fiduciary responsibilities that can no longer be dismissed or neglected, e.g., it will happen only when (a.) time permits, (b.) the resources become available, (c.) competitors are observed doing it, or (d.) a professional standard or a legislative mandate is adopted leaving businesses with few, if any options, other than compliance.

Too, the intangible asset ‘roadmap’ advocated here, dispels the really unfortunate assumption held by far too many management teams that intangible assets and their management are the sole province of large, multi-national, Fortune 1000 categories of corporations.  The reality is, intangible assets are firmly embedded in and being routinely produced by the 20+ million small, mid-size, and early-stage firms in the U.S. and no doubt, an equal number of international firms regardless of sector.  A key issue, in my view, in both circumstances, does either understand it, know it, and actually (a.) put their intangibles to work, and (b.) have processes and procedures in place to identify, unravel, assess, protect,  preserve, and monitor their intangibles’ contributory value and the competitive advantages and revenue they produce.

Most every company, with few, if any exceptions the author has had contact over the years, possesses what I refer to as ‘home grown’ (internally produced)  intangibles that are frequently highly specialized and  company specific irrespective of size, industry sector, or maturity.  In most instances, I find these assets, managerially speaking, are not well suited for one-size-fits-all or snap-shot-in-time (asset) management approaches.  Instead, they require nuanced handling aligned – commensurate with…

  • achieving the most effective and efficient use
  • maximizing their contributory-collaborative value, and
  • building and strengthening a company’s structural capital and competitive advantages throughout its supply-stakeholder value chain
  • particular types of (business) transactions.

For these reasons, I advocate practical, yet individualized intangible asset management approaches which I routinely refer to as my ’what fits best’ approach.  That is, at least my experience suggests that ’what fits best’ for a company will usually ‘work best’ for a company insofar as helping achieve business goals and objectives through its stewardship, oversight, and management of its intangible assets.

So, whether one conceives my ‘roadmap’ through a conventional sequential lens or more as a ‘big picture’ mosaic that reflects – encompasses a range of challenges fully integrated with practical insights for solving (intangible) asset management, stewardship, and oversight challenges, my message remains laser focused; business decision makers, regardless of their specialization, professional experiences, or title, need to acquire, if they haven’t already, a strong operational and managerial clarity – familiarity with intangible assets because these skill sets are essential requisites for successfully and effectively managing intangible asset dominated/intensive companies in the globally competitive, aggressive, and predatorial business transaction arena in which there are absolutely no indicators of reversal.

I respectfully recognize, just making sense of the knowledge (intangible asset) based economy and the increasingly intense business environment it has given birth to, is not sufficient unless readers can literally use and apply the information provided, that is, to frame and execute their own profitable and sustainable roadmap for their intangible assets.  That’s why the various chapters in our upcoming book will, individually and collectively, provide readers with relevant and current insights about, not just a starting point, but the practical steps that are necessary along the way to help management teams arrive at a successful, profitable, and strategically sustainable destination!

While I am a strong advocate of utilizing intangible assets as fully and completely as possible, it is not my intent to represent intangibles as constituting either a silver bullet or a one-size-fits-all template that will produce immediate financial – competitive advantage magic for a company.

I do know however, that it remains an irreversible economic fact that 80+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, and growth potential lie in – evolve directly from intangible assets.  Thus, unless and until management teams, boards, investors, stakeholders, and other business decision makers begin demanding that (their) company’s intangible assets ‘be taken out for a ride’, those assets will likely remain idle, taken for granted, and otherwise left unused, under-valued, and vulnerable to global competitors to acquire and use at will.

Each blog post is researched and written by me with the genuine intent it serves 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  unsubstantiated commentary or information piggy-backed to other sources.

Comments regarding my blog posts are encouraged and respected. Should any reader elect to utilize all or a portion 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 m.moberly@kpstrat.com

 

 

Intangible Asset Risk Officer

March 14th, 2013. Published under Intangible asset protection, Managing intangible assets, Value Propositions. No Comments.

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…

  1. Developing a strategic plan to monitor asset risks, value, and materiality changes in accordance with assets’ respective value and functionality cycle.
  2. 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.
  3. Conducting specialized market entry and/or transaction due diligence assessments regarding the intangible assets in play, in both pre – post transaction contexts.
  4. 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.
  5. Building an ‘risk intelligent company culture’ for intangible assets that converges with a company’s business objectives.
  6. 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.
  7. 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.
  8. 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 m.moberly@kpstrat.com

Intangible Asset Strategist…It’s Time Your Company Finds One!

March 2nd, 2013. Published under Managing intangible assets. No Comments.

Michael D. Moberly   March 2, 2013       ‘A blog where attention span matters’.

It’s not a cliché…for some management teams, c-suites, and boards, the phrase ‘knowledge-based or intangible asset driven economy, or the notion that 65+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, and ‘building blocks’ for growth, sustainability, and profitability reside in intangible assets remains more cliché than reality or economic fact.  Reluctance or reticence to recognize and act on these facts – realities are respectfully, but most assuredly, mistaken.

The truth does not lie somewhere in the middle…One would think those economic facts, standing alone, fiduciary responsibilities aside, would be sufficient inducement for management teams to act accordingly.  Unfortunately, and for various reasons, not all management teams have achieved operational familiarity with intangible assets. Instead, experience suggests they find them unwieldy, sometimes challenging to engage and difficult to measure.  That’s in part due to the adverse tri-fecta of…

  • lacking a conventional sense of physicality
  • the absence of being included in b-school curriculums, and
  • not being reported on company balance sheets or financial statements, unless they’re bundled together as the catchall ‘goodwill’.

In today’s tightly wound, highly compressed, and increasingly aggressive and predatorial (global) business transaction environment, companies that continue to overlook, be dismissive of, or routinely hand-off intangible assets to legal counsel or accounting units, assuming they’re legal versus business management issues, then readers are respectfully obliged to read further!

Intangible assets, e.g., intellectual, structural, and relationship capital, brand, etc., can expand and mature very rapidly within an organization.  If not recognized, unraveled, developed, safeguarded, and monitored from the outset, the probability they will be compromised, misappropriated, or literally meld into open – public domain sources is predictably high.  And, once a company’s intangible assets, whatever form they may take, i.e., unique knowhow and/or competitive advantage enters the public domain, re-covering their real (full) contributory value and uncontested use will be both costly and unlikely.  Having an experienced intangible asset specialist – strategist in place can go a long way toward mitigating, if not alleviating such problems.

How does this translate…? Stone v. Ritter in particular, (but also, In Re Caremark and In Re Disney) are three cases that uniquely draw attention to the importance, if not fiduciary responsibility for companies to have effective (intangible asset and IP) stewardship, oversight, and management practices (procedures, policies) in place.

Yes, these are Delaware cases, and yes, they are 2006 and 1996 decisions respectively, but they present relevant issues that warrant board and management team attention.  Collectively, these cases, particularly Stone v. Ritter, elevate ‘the bar’ insofar carving a path of permanency to the stewardship, oversight, and management of a company’s intangible (non-physical) assets, not tangible (physical) assets.

Most importantly, in my view, these cases conveys much warranted clarity to the necessity that boards, management teams, and c-suites be kept apprised of what’s going on inside their company in the form of a (a.) good faith duty, and/or (b.) duty of loyalty to ensure their company has sufficient (intangible) asset monitoring and reporting (compliance) systems in place to routinely and properly keep decision makers – strategic planners appropriately apprised, i.e.,

  • with timely and accurate information, that is sufficient to allow them (within their respective scope of responsibility) to
  • reach informed judgments concerning a company’s compliance with law, and business performance.

In other words, absent specific and effective (communication, reporting) practices to ensure each of the above consistently occur, companies may well be (in light of the aforementioned court decisions) fail to satisfy the duty to be reasonably informed about the company and therefore, be held personally liable for problems that arise pertaining to the stewardship, oversight, and management of intangible and other assets.

The business rationale for engaging intangible assets is much deeper than Stone v. Ritter alone…admittedly, a significant, but unknown number of management team members, c-suites, and boards have yet to fully and consistently engage their intangible assets or realize it’s in their interests to do so.  For them, let’s return to the basic economic fact that 65+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, and ‘building blocks’ for growth, sustainability, and profitability, do, in fact, originate in intangible assets!  That irreversible 2013 business reality, should serve as a strong, stand alone motive for management teams, c-suites, and boards to not merely take notice, but to act, and act effectively.

A difficult theory of corporate law…it’s far from being rocket science to recognize that endeavoring to hold members of a company’s board (personally) liable for poor or the absence of oversight, stewardship, and management of a company’s intangible assets, is a difficult theory in corporation law to prevail. It is, nevertheless, essential, in today’s increasingly competitive, aggressive, predatorial, and ‘winner-take-all’ (global) business and transaction environment, that those bodies assume a more ‘hands on’ position with respect to the stewardship, oversight, and management of a company’s (intangible) assets.

Intangible asset strategists are impediment to productivity or efficiency….in Stone v. Ritter it was found that important and necessary information failed to reach the board because of ineffective internal asset controls, monitoring, or communication of those controls fell far short or were non-existent.  So, the significance of this particular ruling is that personal liability may attach along with damages if there’s a failure to, (a.) implement an effective information dissemination system, and (b.)coupled with regular (system) monitoring to ensure boards have sufficient and correct information to make informed decisions.

Irrespective of this particular Delaware court decision, a company’s size, its revenues, or industry sector, it’s quite likely some management teams (and boards) will regard the (potential) contributions of an intangible asset specialist-strategist as being unnecessary or an impediment to achieving a company’s (strategic) goals and objectives, i.e., impeding productivity and efficiencies in favor of dispersing such responsibilities throughout a c-suite.

But, in my view, management teams and boards who continue the path of dismissiveness and/or table this managerial responsibility indefinitely are doing so at their financial and competitive advantage peril.  That’s because there remains this pesky reality that 65+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, and future wealth creation capabilities today are directly related to intangible assets.

So, when the proposition is framed in this factual economic context, management teams are remiss, at minimum, if they don’t objectively deliberate the following ‘is their company effectively positioned, insofar as possessing the expertise and skill sets…

  • to consistently identify, unravel, nurture, utilize, bundle, and effectively and efficiently extract as much value as possible from its intangibles, and
  • simultaneously safeguard and monitor those assets’ value, materiality, and risk.

So, instead of assuming satisfaction with past practice, or worse, assuming all things intangible are either legal or accounting decisions, not strategic business decisions, management teams and boards are obliged to critically and objectively assess ‘has the time come’?

 My blog posts are researched and written by me with the genuine intent they serve as a worthy and respectful venue 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, unsubstantiated commentary, or single paragraphed platforms to reference other media. 

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 m.moberly@kpstrat.com

Intangible Asset Management ‘S.O.M.’ Plans: Stewardship, Oversight, and Management

February 20th, 2013. Published under Managing intangible assets. No Comments.

Michael D. Moberly    February 20, 2013

It’s an economic fact that 65+% that most company’s value, sources of revenue, and ‘building blocks’ for growth, profitability, and sustainability today arise from – are embedded in intangible assets including IP (intellectual property).  Irrespective of the on-going economic challenges, business decision makers will find it both prudent and lucrative to put forth the relatively minimal time and effort necessary to devise and implement an asset stewardship, oversight, and management (S.O.M) plan.

There here are numerous perspectives about what the ingredients of an effective S.O.M. plan should include.  My perspective is that it include the following sequenced ideologies, i.e.,

  • first, identify, unravel, and assess (distinguish) each intangible asset relative to its contributory value, sustainability, and vulnerability to compromise, i.e., undermine its competitive advantages or other act that adversely affects asset value.
  • second, identify specific (asset) S.O.M. measures to ensure the rightful asset holder (company) are positioned to sustain control, use, ownership of the assets and monitor their value, materiality, and risks.
  • third, explore – examine ways and opportunities which certain assets may be bundled or otherwise monetized and/or commercialized, i.e., licensing, as collateralization, auctioned or collaboratively applied to joint ventures.

A critical attribute of an intangible asset S.O.M. plan is for its designers – implementers to avoid focusing on an unmeasured presumption that a particular asset will deliver the most sustainable and strongest contributory value while being dismissive of other equally strategic intangibles.

Again, a well structured intangible (IP) asset S.O.M. plan should include a strong forward looking (projective oriented) posture that encourages identifying, unraveling, and examining specific assets that can serve as ‘building blocks’ (foundations) to a company’s future opportunities for growth, sustainability, and profitability.

So, an intangible (IP) asset S.O.M. plan is not solely about today, tomorrow, or otherwise, the near term, it’s also about taking the proverbial ‘long view’ with respect to adopting  prudent strategies for utilizing and exploiting all things intangible.

Why is an intangible asset S.O.M. plan necessary?  The answer lies in the fact that when business (asset) valuations were initiated in the 19th and 20th centuries, they were, at the time, exclusively about measuring the value of physical (tangible) property (assets), e.g., real-estate, inventory, and equipment, etc.  But, beginning in the late 20th and certainly now in the 21st century, the value of businesses and companies are increasingly embedded with and dominated by intangible asset (and IP) portfolios.  The reason is, globally speaking, businesses are significantly more dependent on and utilize these largely knowledge or know-how based assets which include all forms of intellectual, structural, and relationship capital to achieve competitive advantages, elevate company value, generate revenue, and (build) extend sustainability.

The Brookings Institution contributed to a global awakening of the intangible asset phenomena when it conducted and publicly released the ‘Intangibles Project’ report in the late 1980’s which clearly gave business credence to the economic fact – business reality that intangible assets, including IP, does not merely serve as a company’s market – sector competitive differentiators’, but also represent the increasingly dominant (primary) source of current – future company value, revenue, and sustainability.

With few exceptions at the time, there were seemingly few sufficiently forward looking – thinking management teams that understood the permanence, significance, and impact of the Brookings’ report other (intangible asset) value signals would come to have on business operations and transactions.  For many management teams who ‘got it’, embarked on various transformations away from the conventional management and extraction of value from tangible-physical assets to identifying, nurturing, acquiring, and extracting value from intangible assets!

Let me be clear about a particular aspect of intangible (IP) asset S.O.M. plans.  That is, I remain unconvinced that a pre-requisite for either plan development or commencement occur only after an intangible asset – IP audit and/or valuation have been completed.   I am not suggesting, neither may not be helpful to management teams. But likewise, neither should be considered the absolute starting point for an intangible asset S.O.M. plan.  That’s especially relevant in light of my perspective that an unnecessarily high percentage of companies and their management teams remain dismissive at best, or operationally unfamiliar at worse, of intangible assets and their stewardship, oversight, and management.

There are of course, specific accounting – valuation standards and methodologies used which can be useful rebuttal to technical scrutiny when asset origination, ownership, and/or value are being contested or litigated.  Frankly, I often sense there are varying levels of subjectivity in asset valuations that reduces their credence.

Two things I remain confident about are, every company management team competing in this irreversible knowledge (intangible asset) based global economy absolutely must…

  • engage their firm’s intangible assets, and
  • be consistently engaged in strategies to exploit value, generate revenue, and elevate competitive advantages of all of its intangible assets.

Determining the group, team, or individual responsible for a intangible (IP) asset S.O.M. plan as well as a company’s intangible asset – IP portfolio, may respectfully warrant some training.  Admittedly, there are various options (possible choices) as to who may be best or at least better suited to assume these responsibilities ranging from inside or outside legal counsel, external licensing agents, and/or intangible (IP) asset disposition firms.

Broadly speaking, any of the above may be a satisfactory choice, but, for this position, it may be somewhat relevant to company size, sector, and affordability.  Professionally speaking, I am an advocate of making the selection internally, e.g., an individual(s) broadly familiar with

  • the company’s operations and culture…
  • inter and intra-sector global competitiveness…
  • objective measurement and performance of individual (intangible) assets and/or the asset portfolio as a whole…
  • current principles of asset assessment and valuation in order to assign values triage
  • a proactive and strategic outlook relative to identifying, assessing, and prioritizing assets’ current contributory and (potential) future value…
  • a current sense of global acts and conduct that can adversely affect asset control and value…

Too, whoever is selected, it is essential they can objectively frame and articulate each of the above as necessary into a ‘best possible and most affordable’ intangible (IP) asset S.O.M. plan.

And, of course, whatever the process and criteria used to select those responsible for the implementation and consistent operationalization of the S.O.M. plan, it will be important they have a clear and unmistakable chain of authority which ‘all things intangible’ flow.

It’s important for management teams to recognize that IP is merely one type or category of intangible asset.  There are indeed millions of companies globally that do not hold or own, for a variety of reasons any issued – registered intellectual property.  That said, it’ important for management teams to recognize that registered intellectual property often, has embedded within it various intangible assets that routinely serve as its foundation or ‘building blocks’.

Too, in most circumstances, comparable intangible (IP) asset S.O.M. practices and methods which are applicable to the Fortune 100’s are also relevant to SME’s (small, medium sized enterprises).  In fact, I’m hard pressed to think of any business and/or sector that would not find an intangible asset S.O.M. plan beneficial insofar as…

  • unraveling (and establishing) a clear, preferably uncontestable – documentable chain for each (intangible) assets’ origin, ownership, control, use, and assignment, if applicable,
  • recognizing intangible assets produce varying levels of contributory value relative to a company’s sources of revenue and competitive advantages, and
  • laying a foundation for recognizing the necessity to not merely utilize intangibles, but safeguard them, which collectively
  • enhances a company’s operational and strategic outlook and positioning capability.

My blog posts are researched and written by me with the genuine intent they serve as a worthy and respectful venue 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, unsubstantiated commentary, or single paragraphed platforms to reference other media. 

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 m.moberly@kpstrat.com