IPTJ will focus on the sale and purchase of the approximately 660,000 patents that have become dormant in Japan. IPTJ will acquire the patents from ALPS, from banks holding patents as security for lending, and from bankruptcy administrators. IPTJ will then focus on the sale and purchase of other IPR, such as patents held by other companies.
Some companies are already selling and licensing their own patents, but IPTJ, in addition to transferring ALPS' own IPR, will also become involved in the transfer of dormant patents from other companies.
Attempts are currently being made to construct an online market that will facilitate trading of IPR. IPTJ, however, by concentrating on both buying and selling, will accumulate expertise in the trading of IPR, and will therefore be able to trade in IPR at an appropriate value. IPTJ is also the first company in Japan to contribute to the future establishment of an IPR trading market.
More than 1,000,000 patents have been issued in Japan, of which more than 66% are not currently being used, and are therefore dormant. Amid concerns that Japan's international competitiveness is weakening, a greater focus is being placed on increasing the liquidity of the large number of patents that are not being utilized, allowing companies that need them to purchase them at the time they need them. Even the Strategic Council on Intellectual Property, the government body set up in February of this year, in its "Outline for Intellectual Property Strategy", advocates increased support in such areas as: evaluation and utilization of intellectual property; invigoration of the market; and assistance to small, medium and venture companies. In this regard, IPTJ truly accords with the government's strategy.
The effects of the establishment of this company will have only a minimal impact on ALPS' current business performance.
-- Company Name: IP Trading Japan Co., Ltd.
-- Address: 1-2-3 Minami-yukigaya, Ota-ku, Tokyo
-- President: Junichi Umehara
-- Establishment: November 1, 2002
-- Capital: 50,000,000 yen
-- Sales Estimate
(fiscal 2003): 140,000,000 yen
-- Shareholders: ALPS Electric Co., Ltd. (100%)
-- Operations: Sale, purchase and licensing of
intellectual property rights;
consulting and evaluation services;