Data from a recent benchmark survey, covering responses from 44 law departments in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), allowed a different analysis of IP spending. Those law departments reported their external counsel spend as well as their spend on patent and trademark registration, maintenance and annuity costs (See my post of Sept. 9, 2008: include governmental IP expenses in the law department’s budget.). This survey was conducted by Laurence Simons, a leading legal recruitment firm, and this author; the report is available for a nominal cost from Laurence Simons.
I dropped the bottom quarter and the top quarter, and calculated the average of the middle half. The group that remained spent 36 percent of what they spent on outside counsel on their governmental IP costs. Because those companies were not necessarily IP-intensive, the rough benchmark of one-third of external counsel costs goes to IP fees might hold for many companies.