Over the past few years, major global companies in various sectors have transferred unprecedented number of patents to tax havens dispersed throughout the world. The NPEs have also joined the mass transfer of patents to tax havens, rapidly overtaking the number of patent transfers by major global companies. It appears that such mass transfer of patents is becoming a new business trend that is not likely to go away anytime soon. We tracked closely the patent assignment movement by patent holders from as early as 2000 and analyzed the assignment trend by location, assignors and assignees. Through this process, we have made the following key findings :
- Remarkable number of patents are transferred to tax havens.
- The reason for patent assignment is clear— favorable tax treatment.
- There are 25 big assignors, coming from diverse sectors.
- The NPEs are expeditiously joining the mass transfer of patents to tax havens in substantial numbers.
- There is a direct correlation between patent transfer and increased possibility of bringing patent litigations and maximization of profits from the patents.
This phenomenon of patent assignments and migration of patent holding companies into tax havens gives us an insight as to the current and future trend in how businesses in various sectors may best utilize and protect their patents. Companies and the NPEs have never been more willing to execute patent assignments than they are now, in hopes to utilize their assigned patents and maximize the value of the patents. All of these findings point to the same direction. Patent risk management and intelligence is no longer a matter of due diligence, but of necessity.
Table of Contents
IPs flocking to tax havens
Tax 0%, calling global enterprises
Companies transferred patents to tax havens
Asian companies and NPEs are flocking to tax havens
Leading to patent transfer and litigation
2014.05 | Publisher : Electronic Times Research Center(ETRC)