Thoughts from the Aon Team
August was a busier month than usual for mergers and acquisitions, underscoring as always the underlying value in IP. As Sony announces a push into the mobile gaming sector that will lean heavily on legacy IP, the Federal Trade Commission will dig into Amazon's acquisition of iRobot, a deal that could greatly bolster the company's hold on smart home intelligence.
Meanwhile, automakers and phone makers continue to struggle with chip shortages, mired by both global and domestic factors. Some argue that IP has a crucial role to play in preventing a similar situation in the future.
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Aon IP Solutions
- More experts are recommending IP licensing for companies to protect against supply chain disruptions, especially amid the ongoing microchip shortage. Citing the lack of chips provided to automakers, IP lawyers argue that the use of a conditional license or intellectual property escrow could allow companies to use their supplier’s IP in the event of agreed-upon conditions such as pandemic-related supply chain issues. The U.S. is moving to restrict exports of specialized software used in chipmaking, further complicating the chip supply against a backdrop of ongoing trade wars.
- Japanese gaming giant Sony announced it will step into the mobile gaming sector with a strategy heavily reliant on its massive library of intellectual property. Sony will compete with large Chinese companies such as Tencent and NetEase, a factor that onlookers say would be riskier if the company did not have valuable IPs and strong branding. The company said it hopes to bolster its mobile gaming business with more acquisitions that add to its library.
- A lawsuit between the semiconductor firms Arm and Qualcomm could have a significant impact on companies' ability to design the kind of chip used in most smartphones. Arm is seeking to force Qualcomm to destroy information and hardware from its Nuvia acquisition including the rights to develop a chip using Arm’s instruction set architecture (ISA), a core piece of intellectual property that outlines how a chip performs basic functions like accessing memory or basic arithmetic. Experts say the lawsuit could open up a path to the adoption of open-source alternatives to Arm.
"It’s a Hot Month for M&A With $63 Billion in North America Deals So Far" - Bloomberg / Source: Bloomberg data
Aon in the News
- Aon launched a global strategy and technology group to further insight and solutions for businesses, governments, and communities. The group will initially focus on the property & casualty and life sectors before expanding to risk and capital.
- Aon CEO Greg Case told attendees of a reinsurance conference that the current era of volatility presents a "one in a lifetime" opportunity for the risk and insurance industry to make a difference in the global economy.
- U.S. cyber market premiums increased by 76% last year, according to Aon's market update. In addition, a new Aon report found that U.S. employers will pay 6.5% more on average for employee healthcare coverage in 2023 compared to this year.
- Aon expects price increases and higher interest rates to translate to higher margins and robust, longer-term growth in the ILS market, according to the ILS Annual Report.
Aon’s Intellectual Property Solutions team helps clients identify, protect, and maximize value from their most valuable assets in today’s business world, their intellectual property. Aon brings the best minds and strong analytical tools to provide a comprehensive approach to intellectual property strategy, valuation and risk management across a client’s business -- aligning current and future intellectual property assets with a businesses’ overarching strategy.
For more information about Aon’s Intellectual Property Solutions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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