How to think like an i-preneur

I define an i-preneur as someone who can extract value from intellectual assets. An i-preneur has clear goals and procedures to generate income from their knowledge-based assets.

Understanding how intellectual assets generate wealth is the biggest challenge today’s entrepreneurs face. It is also among the biggest opportunities for wealth creation.

I’ve seen many i-preneurs in action. Here is a brief list of the traits that make them stand out and win in a competitive market:

1. They understand how intellectual assets fit within their big picture strategy.

2. They link up their key intellectual assets with their business model, e.g. licensing, exclusive manufacturing, trademarking and branding.

3. They know how to trade their intellectual assets for valuable resources with critical partners. The best i-preneurs I have met trade their intellectual assets for critical and scarce resources like distribution channels, manufacturing capacity, exclusivity and co-branding opportunities.

4. They understand how to bundle their assets and manage patents, trade secrets, designs, copyrights and trademarks to build a strong overall portfolio.

5. They invest in intellectual assets that have the promise of commercial value.

6. They survey the intellectual landscape to secure a strong position.

7. They understand the ins and outs of the options granted by intellectual rights.

8. They manage their intellectual properties, and never expect others to do so.

9. They realize that intellectual assets are only one piece of a larger business coordination puzzle.

10. They can put a dollar value on their rights.

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