Renewal Study of European Patents: A Three-country Comparison
This paper utilizes the renewal records of the EPO (European Patent Office) patents and estimates the patent value distributions in Germany, France and the U.K. We extend the patent renewal study for the same three countries in Pakes (1986) by examining how the possible patent infringments affect patent holders' renewal decision makings as well as patent evaluations. In addition, the utilization of EPO-route patent renewal records in our study corrects the possible data inconsistancy problem in Pakes (1986). Estimation results indicate a highly skewed distribution of patent values in all three countries, as found by Pakes (1986). However, the quality and the private value of the EPO patents in our sample are substantially higher-the estimated median values are three to ten times higher than those of the national patents in Pakes (1986). More interestingly, the EPO patent holders are found to be much more willing to invest resources on finding new commercialization strategies in order to exploit their patented idea than the national patent holders in Pakes (1986).
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