Moderated two panels at the Annual Meeting of the Silicon Valley Chapter of LES (Licensing Executives Society).
The first was with Sarah Guichard, Vice President, Acquisitions at RPX and Murray Vince, Senior Director, Strategic Business Development at Intellectual Ventures. Responding to the question whether patents mattered to investors, they discussed the state of technology valuations and how patents can favorably affect the value of startups and mature companies.
The second was with the top angel investor groups in Silicon Valley:
Steve Millard, Co-Founder, Pathfinder Partners
Manthi Nguyen, Vice President, Sand Hill Angels
Carol Sands of Angels Forum
Ron Weissman, Band of Angels
Randy Williams, Founder & CEO, Keiretsu Forum
Posing the question if patents matter to startups, the answers were mixed. Spend money on patents which may be better used to acquire customers? What happens if you gain traction and millions of paying customers? Will a larger company swoop in and steel them by offering the same service at possibly a lower price or worse … free?