Intellectual Property: Misunderstood and Undervalued By Global Risk Management Community
Global organizations are largely failing to understand the intellectual property (IP) risks facing their firms and the value of their intangible assets, according to a global report published today by Marsh and Liberty International Underwriters (LIU).
In the 2011 Intellectual Property Survey Report, three-quarters of respondents were unable to quantify the proportion of their firms’ values that could be attributed to intangible assets or goodwill. This is despite nearly 70 percent of firms identifying IP protection as a crucial incentive to innovation within their firms.
In addition, the majority of firms said that IP was not specifically included in their risk management programs and only 21 percent of respondents purchased insurance to cover their trademark exposures, with even fewer purchasing insurance coverage for copyright, design right, patent, and trade secret risks.
Fredrik Motzfeldt, Communications, Media and Technology Leader, Europe, the Middle East and Africa, Marsh, commented: “Intellectual property is often the critical asset for firms to protect. Our survey shows there is a real need for organizations to take a more proactive risk management approach to the protection of vital assets.”
Matthew Hogg, Vice President, Strategic Assets, Liberty International Underwriters, added: “Failure to provide adequate protection for IP has the potential to threaten an organization’s survival. The survey makes clear that firms in the US are taking this threat more seriously than their European counterparts; this could impact global competitiveness.”
The report also highlights several differences of opinions between U.S. and European companies:
- More than 70 percent of respondents in the U.S. stated that patents were of high or medium importance, compared to just 56 percent of European companies.
- Only 37 percent of U.S. company respondents perceived the risk of patent invalidity proceedings to be low versus 75 percent of European companies.
- Nearly 16 percent of U.S. respondents perceived the risk of IP litigation in the United States to be high versus 33.3 percent of European respondents.
The 2011 Intellectual Property Survey Report, created by Marsh and LIU, gauges the current understanding of intellectual property (IP) trends and risks among businesses globally.