Patent Troll Insurer RPX Corporation to IPO
The not-quite-two-year-old San Francisco start-up, RPX Corporation has filed to go public
By: Maureen O'Gara
Jan. 31, 2011 05:00 AM
You too might someday be able to make a buck or two off of the patent racket.
The not-quite-two-year-old San Francisco start-up, RPX Corporation, which is apparently making a killing selling patent troll insurance, has filed to go public.
It's looking to raise $100 million so it can keep on buying patents and selling protection to its dues-paying clients who now number 72 mostly brand name companies like Cisco, IBM, Dell, HP, Intel, Motorola Mobility, Novell, Palm, Qualcomm, Red Hat, RIM, Microsoft, Nokia, SAP, Verizon, heck even Walgreens, who pay the so-called "defensive patent aggregator" anywhere between $40,000 and $5.2 million a year depending on size.
Profitable since its first full year of operation, RPX did $800,000 worth of business in 2008, $32.8 million in 2009 and $65.2 million in the first nine months of 2010 when it made $10 million.
Financed initially by Kleiner Perkins, Charles River Ventures and Index Ventures, it says it's spent close to $250 million buying up about 1,500 US and international patents and patent rights in consumer electronics and PCs, e-commerce and software, media content and distribution, mobile communications and handsets, networking and semiconductors.
It's pledged never to assert or litigate the patents in its portfolio.
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