Effective Management Of Intangible Assets Is ‘Mission Critical’!

Michael D. Moberly   March 13, 2009

The five primary reasons are:

1.  It’s an economic fact – business reality…that a growing cross-section of current studies and research consistently report (even during this recession) that 65+% of most company’s value, sources of revenue, and foundations for future wealth creation and sustainabiliy lie in – are directly linked to intangible assets and intellectual property. 

Ensuring control, use, ownership, and value of those assets for the duration of their functional (value) life cycle is key, in large part, due to their relevance to deals, transactions, alliances, and/or collaborations a company may wish to engage in which those assets will be in play.  In this context, they represent fiduciary responsibilities that companies can no longer afford to delay, delegate, or dismiss.  Stewardship, oversight, and managment of those assets now consists of, among other things, monitoring their control, use, ownership, and value to ensure their respective sustainability, which is now a key element to many company’s economic (recession) survivability!

2. Unlike patents, trademarks, or copyrights…there is no certificate issued by the government that says, ‘the real value of your company lies in its intangible assets, competitive advantages, proprietary know how, brand, reputation, image, and goodwill, etc.  Identifying, protecting, preserving, and monitoring the value, status, stability, fragility, and sustainability of those valuable assets, and, in a growing number of instances, a company’s survivability, falls exclusively to management teams, c-suites, boards, and D&O’s.

3. Intangible asset and IP value are not static…valuation of those assets absolutely cannot be conducted (measured) in one-size-fits-all or snap-shot-in-time contexts. Those assets’ are unique and specific to each company and their market space. Their value can fluctuate and the corresponding brand, reputation, image, goodwill, and competitive advantages will be consistently at risk.  Once either is compromised, infringed, impugned, or becomes suspect, economic value, market position, and competitive advantages can commence hemorrhaging immediately, globally, and irretrievably!

4. Company intangible assets and intellectual property are no longer the beneficiary of conventional IP enforcements, e.g., deterrents…largely because the infringement, misappropriation, theft, counterfeiting, competitor intelligence, data mining, and economic espionage industries have become economically and culturally embedded in many countries’ GDP!

5. Once it’s gone, it’s probably gone forever…core asset value and competitive advantages can be quickly gleaned by sophisticated and predatorial data mining technologies, information brokers, infringers, counterfeiters, and a growing global cadre of ’overnight’ economic-competitive adversaries.

Compromised know how, sensitive business-R&D information and proprietary competitive advantages can be instantaneously dispersed globally at which point value and competitive advantages become largely irreplaceable, irretrievable, and extraordinarily costly, time consuming, and momentum stifling to pursue!

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