When you’re facing the merger or acquisition of a company, especially in the tech industry, you may face a significant number of IP (intellectual property) issues throughout the process. Before a buyer will invest significant amounts of money into purchasing your intellectual property, you’ll have to be able to produce the proper copyrights, licensures, and trademarks.
Feel more prepared to face the upcoming situations, and research what lies ahead. Here is a quick breakdown of a few common issues involving intellectual property during business acquisitions and mergers. Go into your next big move knowing exactly what it takes to get through.
Sourcing and preparing the proper documentation
When you’re planning on selling or merging your business, one of the most common issues is providing the proper sourcing and documentation for all intellectual property.
Depending on the way you structured your operation as it grew, the sourcing and documentation for ownership of the company’s intellectual property can be extremely difficult to lock down.
It is wise to track down and compile the vital information needed to prove ownership of your IP before ever embarking upon a sale or merger.
Open sourcing issues with software development
Utilizing open source software can lead to compliance issues for someone looking to purchase your business. It’s important that you tie up loose ends, so buyers aren’t faced with unnecessary risk when determining whether or not your business is a good buy.
The particular issue with open source licenses is that some of them require the next modifier or distributor of the software to make its coding freely available to third parties. For a prospective buyer, this issue could very well be a deal breaker.
Scheduling disclosures for acquisitions
Once a buyer purchases your business, you’ll have to work out a disclosure schedule. This means that you’ll have to figure out a timespan in which you will be required to reveal all of your trade secrets and IP information necessary to put the new owners in the know.
The issue of IP-related disputes
If your business has ever had or is currently having any issues with IP ownership disputes, it could make the sale of your operation much more difficult. Most buyers don’t want to get involved in such issues, so it’s best to wrap these things up before you work to market the sale of your business.
The acquisition of websites and social media
Selling a business may also include the heavy dependence upon a website or social media presence. If that is the case with your business, a buyer may have a few concerns.
A buyer may want to know if your user agreements and privacy policies have been properly upheld. They may also want to see what protectants are in place to preserve ownership of all the organization’s digital content.