Prompting Collaborative Innovation
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Here's the gist of it: Our new IBM Ventures in Collaboration program will give VC firms in our partner network and their portfolio companies the opportunity to access a broad range of IBM intellectual property more than 40,000 patents to help drive new innovation. It will also promote the opportunity to partner with the IBM inventor community to access the technology behind the patents.
The program will consist of two types of cross licensing agreements, one specifically designed for early-staged startups generating less than $10 million in revenue, the other designed for later-stage, venture-backed companies with greater revenues. This will help minimize the bureaucracy and accommodate the need to move fast in start-up land. Also, we're going to administer the programs through the companies' investing VCs, as they're closest to the end customer (the startups) who will benefit most from the program.
This announcement follows short on the heels of several other innovation-related announcements we've made over the past 18 months. Previously, we also pledged 500 software patents to the software community, as well as granted open IP access to specific standards bodies and formalized a non-assertion pledge for the Linux kernel.
You can learn more at the IBM Venture Capital Group Website.