Three Things Business Leaders Should Know About Intangible Asset Risk

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

Risks to intangible assets can materialize rapidly and cascade throughout an enterprise and its supply-value chain to adversely affect a company’s reputation, brand, competitiveness, and sources of revenue. With growing frequency materialized reputation risks are long lasting insofar as returning to operational normalcy and have become a costly and time consuming endeavor. It’s clear now, in a growing number of instances significant reputation risks can be, quite literally, irreversible. As an intangible asset strategist and risk specialist, companies operating in today’s aggressively competitive, predatorial, and winner-take-all global business environment, it is essential to recognize that company value, competitiveness, and primary sources of revenue are dominated by intangible assets, as such…

  1. intangible assets should not be construed as merely constituting new business jargon with responsibilities and/or tasks which can be dismissed or neglected based on the misapprehension it will get done as time permits, when the resources become available, or when competitors are seen doing it!
  2. the responsibilities associated with managing and safeguarding intangible assets, i.e., preserving their control, use, ownership, and monitoring their value, materiality, and risk are very much akin to fiduciary responsibilities as described in Stone v. Ritter, 911 A.2d 362 (Del. Supr. 2006).
  3. in today’s increasingly ‘flat world’ (Thomas L. Friedman) in which R&D, global business transactions, and company operations are routinely conceived, driven, and executed by the interconnected flow of data and information, i.e., intangible assets in the form of intellectual, structural, and/or relationship capital, it’s 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 enable this to occur, business leaders and management teams are obliged to execute the necessary and effective practices, processes, and strategies, along with a (enterprise-wide) culture which (a.) recognizes and appreciates intangible assets, and (b.) possesses levels of alertness and skill to sustain key assets’control, use, and ownership.

As always, readers comments are encouraged and most welcome!



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