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Nov. 30, 2022

Chris Morton On The Power And Leverage Of Intelectual Property For Success (#182)

Chris Morton On The Power And Leverage Of Intelectual Property For Success (#182)
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“Don't put off you dreams for tomorrow when you can do it today.” - Chris Morton

Chris Morton is an operating partner at Orchid Black. Chris launches and accelerates the profitable growth of companies by creatively mapping technology to successful business models and market penetration strategies, leveraging industry partnerships, and securing institutional and strategic investment.

Highlights for Chris include being the co-founder of SkyCross which sold over 750 million antennas and was later acquired by Airgain.

Chris is also the co-founder of Mesh Networks which was acquired by Motorola and has also raised over $85 million in capital. Chris was awarded the GE Doctoral Fellowship and the Cade Prize for Company Innovation and Leadership.

Community involvement for Chris includes being the former Chairman and now Advisory Board for a Grove Florida and a member of the Executive Committee of Orlando Tech Council.

When it comes to business advice, Chris says, know your strengths and limitations. Be open to feedback and new ideas and hire accordingly. Chris's bucket list includes traveling to Egypt, learning about the structure and uses of DNA from experts, and learning to play the electric guitar when he isn't playing the drums. Chris earned his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in Communication Systems.

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Enjoy the interview!


[00:00:00] Jeffrey Feldberg: Welcome to the Deep Wealth Podcast where you
learn how to extract your business and personal Deep Wealth.

I'm your host Jeffrey Feldberg.

This podcast is brought to you
by Deep Wealth and the 90-day Deep Wealth Experience.

When it comes to your business
deep wealth, your exit or liquidity event is the most important financial
decision of your life.

But unfortunately, up to 90% of
liquidity events fail. Think about all that time and your hard earned money

Of the quote unquote
"successful" liquidity events, most business owners leave 50% to over
100% of the deal value in the buyer's pocket and don't even know it.

I should know. I said
"no" to a seven-figure offer. And "yes" to mastering the
art and the science of a liquidity event. Two years later, I said
"yes" to a different buyer with a nine figure deal.

Are you thinking about an exit
or liquidity event?

Don't become a statistic and
make the fatal mistake of believing the skills that built your business are the
same ones to sell it.

After all, how can you master
something you've never done before?

Let the 90-day Deep Wealth
Experience and the 9-step roadmap of preparation help you capture the best deal
instead of any deal.

At the end of this episode,
take a moment and hear from business owners like you, who went through the Deep
Wealth Experience.

Chris Morton is an operating
partner at Orchid Black. Chris launches and accelerates the profitable growth
of companies by creatively mapping technology to successful business models and
market penetration strategies, leveraging industry partnerships, and securing
institutional and strategic investment.

Highlights for Chris include
being the co-founder of SkyCross which sold over 750 million antennas and was
later acquired by Airgain.

Chris is also the co-founder of
Mesh Networks which was acquired by Motorola and has also raised over $85
million in capital. Chris was awarded the GE Doctoral Fellowship and the Cade
Prize for Company Innovation and Leadership.

Community involvement for Chris
includes being the former Chairman and now Advisory Board for Grove Florida and
a member of the Executive Committee of Orlando Tech Council.

When it comes to business
advice, Chris says, know your strengths and limitations. Be open to feedback and
new ideas and hire accordingly. Chris's bucket list includes traveling to
Egypt, learning about the structure and uses of DNA from experts, and learning
to play the electric guitar when he isn't playing the drums. Chris earned his
Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in Communication Systems.

Welcome to the Deep Wealth
podcast. I have a friend of the Deep Wealth community. He's no stranger and
he's back for some action, packed value, and insights. So Chris, welcome to the
Deep Wealth Podcast as always. It's really a pleasure, not only to have you
with us but to have you back with us to really do a deep dive on a topic you
don't hear a lot about intellectual property and how that relates to business.
And with your experience, both in the corporate world and as an investor and
with your own companies, you're the perfect individual to walk us through that.
But I don't wanna get ahead of myself.

So Chris, for our new
listeners, why don't we do this? Let's have a quick reminder for every one of,
who are you? What's the story behind this story? How did you get to where you
are today?

[00:03:53] Chris Morton: Sure. First of all, good to be back Jeffrey, and hello everyone. My
background is centered on technology. Generally heavy technology in the
networking space and in the space that surrounds high-speed broadband network,
such as the devices that hang off it. And so my experiences are creating
several companies in that area, fortunate enough to Exit a couple of them and
in doing so, I had lots of experience with generally good, but also lessons
learned in the area of intellectual property and patent filing because of
portion of the world that I've been operating in and the span of involvement
with companies over time has been varied. The two most recent ones that are, I
think good for the folks to know is that I'm a partner at Orchid Black, which
is a value creation firm that takes positions in and otherwise provides help to
grow. Mid-market companies much larger than they otherwise would.

So their owners and investors
can get value outta the company larger than they would've had. And more
recently, I think, since you and I spoke last, by the way, I've become
chairman, not CEO, but chairman of a new company in the RF technology area,
similar to but different from things I've done in the past using RF technology
and antennas in particular, from everything from broadband access in Africa and
in places in the United States, all the way to medical technology and cancer
treatment, all using RF technology is a, not your father's old mobile, approach
that we are taking there in which the expertise we have in this is applied to
new and exciting things that help people live their lives more successfully.

And in all of these, as we
mentioned a moment ago, technology is at the center, but in particular,
protecting that technology has been in the center. So that's my background.

[00:06:04] Jeffrey Feldberg: A big congratulations to you. That's terrific.
And I shouldn't be surprised that's just wonderful to hear what's been going on
since we last spoke.

So Chris, let me ask you this.
And if it's gonna be a little bit of a review for you, but for some of our
listen. Intellectual property IP, why is that important? Why should I really
care? And how does that make a difference? Maybe you can just give us a quick
overview of where things have been with that.

And typical mistakes that most
business owners are making.

[00:06:34] Chris Morton: Yeah, and I think it's important to start with context here,
Jeffrey, even before I talk about the patents and IP themselves, and that is
that when many of us think about IP, they think about our very necessary
partners in the legal profession. And it that do absolutely unreplaceable work.
For the actual filings and creating patents that are protectable when, and if
people need them.

So none of this discussion is
intended to not nod to those sorts of folks that become our partners in this.
But the other realities in this, and then I'll get to some points, about how to
take care. If you will. One is filing patents and getting a patent from an idea
to fully approved perhaps in the United States, perhaps also in other places
around the world is an expensive process. It will take tens of thousands of
dollars per patent. It's possible you may have to defend them in the future.
That is not an argument against patents, but it's an argument that when you do
it, it's a substantial investment in time. And I think that's important for
people to know as well as just again, a piece of background information.

And the third one is, and
you'll recognize this from the great work you do here on the podcast, that our
understanding of innovation companies and tech companies is broader than it
used to be. I think it's great because every region, has their own innovation centers.
Now, every collection of cities, for example, has that sort of thing we do here
in central Florida and involved in that.

But there are true heavy tech
companies. There are tech-enabled companies that make buying and travel and
financial management experiences better for their clients. So there's a broad
net over the term tech and innovation now. And so what all that means as you
think about it is that there is ever more pressure.

I think on the CEOs and
founders, like some of us have been to pick and choose and pick our way through
this process of filing patents. So with that in mind, let's go through some
considerations on the business side. That, the listener will I think appreciate
either that they've been there and done it right or wrong, or it's something
that they might wanna think about with those things in mind.

One of them is what's your
business. And this gets to the issue of tech-enabled, for example, versus a
tech. Is it important in your business to be the first mover and get into a
market and capture it prior to anybody else waking up to the idea? Or is it a
market in which others may have tried to do what you've been able to do?

Technically but failed to do it
or failed to do it as well as you do. And I think those two style companies
just to pick two extreme Jeffrey, tell a tale in the case of technology, which
is core to the identity and value of a company that others don't have. That's
where you can spend time and money, generally speaking, and creating.

Intellectual property it, as we
call it patent filings, where it can help the company in several ways. So the
question there is if you want to do that, what in this tree of decisions falls
under? Yeah. It's relevant to me or not right now, but let's pick the, yeah.
It's relevant to me column if you will, and go down that with a couple of

One of them is where in the
world do you operate another question to ask yourself and I'll tie it back to
pats here. Internet is where do your competitors operate. Where do your
potential strategic partners operate, where geographically that is and where my
potential suitors down the road operate. And let me share some examples from
the. A couple of the companies that we've been fortunate enough to found and
grow had customer bases in various places in Asia, South Korea, China, mainland
Japan, and Taiwan less so in, in Europe, for example, Less so in South America,
et cetera, no disrespect simply where the hot items were being bought and sold.
So in those particular cases or any other place, if you listeners out there,
know your company and your business and your competitor as well will be one of
the base upon which you choose. Where to file patents. Typically, most of us
filed in the United States because it carries a certain weight assuming we're
operating here and we're centered here in United States.

But where else is an important
decision? A because it's expensive and B, because it is one of the ways in
which you can protect your technology. Notice I said one and there are other
criteria to protect yourselves as well, which we probably ought to talk about.
I hadn't thought about that prior to our call.

So if, it's two or three of
those particular countries around the world, my example, or any other, what you
will do is choose to create a core patent in the United States. Typical. And
then also do subsidiary filings in those parts of the world that are important
and the importance not only because other competing technology may be generated
there, but it may be the place where they're bought and sold. And so it's
important that when you think about where in the world we realize it's where
we're bought and where we're.

[00:12:48] Jeffrey Feldberg: And Chris, let me just jump in here for a moment
because I know. Obviously from the Deep Wealth perspective, IP can be a
tremendous differentiator is what we call an X-Factor or Rembrandt. It can add
to enterprise value and just make your company more desirable. But on the flip
side, in both with IP lawyers and, business owners, there's one school of
thought that says.

You can get a patent, you can
get an IP trademark, or whatever it's gonna be to protect your technology. And
that's all fine and good, but in many ways, it's only as protective or as good
as how much money you're prepared. To actually defend it if someone ultimately
copies you. And so it's a little bit of a push and a pull at the same time,
even for startups, as an example, who funding, capital's always something and a
dollar could always go elsewhere to really make a difference.

So in your experience, Chris,
with that in mind, can you give us some insights or some thoughts as to how do
you grapple with that?

[00:13:54] Chris Morton: Yeah. First of all, that part of it is an art, if you will. And part
of the, and I do have a pretty strong opinion about that. Part of it has to do
with the questioning of oneself. What business is? Am I in? And how important
is technology to me? Number one. The second is that to begin, what's called the
timestamping process of a patent is actually fairly cheap.

Hundreds of dollars, not tens
of thousands of dollars. And what I'm referring to here are filing provisional
patents. Which in many parts of the world are recognized. And I won't go
through the list, but it certainly spans many of the areas that many of us in
tech do business in. I mentioned some of those areas earlier.

So for a few hundred dollars,
you can timestamp the patent so that, others that might, hope to get in your
way or, muscle in ahead of you

[00:14:50] Jeffrey Feldberg: And Chris, just a quick question on that. So if
I'm hearing you correctly, when you're saying you can timestamp. So as a
business owner, or as a company, I have something really innovative for me. And
you're saying for a few hundred dollars, I can get something in the books that
at least establishes that on this date in this month.

And this year I've put
something forward to prove that, hey, this is mine. Not somebody else. Is that,
am I correct with that?

[00:15:14] Chris Morton: It's true. And you have a certain amount of time, at least a year,
typically a year to actually start doing more detailed filing. So if you're
just getting started and you feel for some of the other reasons we've talked
about here, that it's an advantageous thing to do, that you can create that
time, but not incur further charges until just under a year later.

But to go back to your core
question, there are trade-offs.

So what to your question again
what are the positives about at least starting with this process as we
described it and beginning to file in selected places,

You literally might win
customers that you cannot before with the technology

[00:15:56] Jeffrey Feldberg: okay.

[00:15:57] Chris Morton: To be perfectly candid. There are parts of the world that in which
popping and recreating technology is often done. However, in certain of those
parts of the world, often in Asia, I think many of the viewers know this, and
these are all good candid discussions that we have here. It's simply fact of
life. However, many of the largest companies have found that easier to work
with companies in partnership and perhaps acquire them than they necessarily do
to steal and reuse, which is, I know a fear that some of our listeners out
there have had why, because scrutiny is higher these days, the cases of
mistreatment are better known. And if technology is important to you, it also
creates something else that the listeners may not realize. And that is that
it's a trading card. Yes. If you actually had to go and spend a hundred
thousand dollars of legal fees, many of us, as we start out, couldn't possibly
do it. But if you have a valuable patent and this is not selling patents, this
is still upon the decision that it's relevant to your business, where you and I
started the discussion.

But if the answer to that is
yes, it's a trading card that you can play against selling your business and
the price thereof against perhaps you don't come after my stuff and I don't
come after yours and I've had that experience. And so it's a powerful trading
card that often does not necessarily result in litigation.

Yes. There are litigations
among giants there millions are spent. We all see them on the paper. There's no
question about that.

[00:17:44] Jeffrey Feldberg: And Chris, maybe we can pause here if I could just
a moment. Because your experience is so vast and we're all learning through
you. And here's a question for you. Maybe you've had this experience, maybe you
haven't I'll ask it anyways, though. Have you been in a situation Chris, where
two different companies, probably different times one had IP that was
registered one didn't that perhaps could have, or maybe even should have, but
for whatever reason wasn't?

And how did that impact the
business? Is there like a JE and story just that help really illustrate how it
can actually help and the time and money into this has an ROI?

[00:18:23] Chris Morton: Yeah. Yes. I hear the question. No, I haven't. And I'm thinking as
I'm talking, no, I haven't directly been at the center point of that.

[00:18:34] Jeffrey Feldberg: okay,

[00:18:34] Chris Morton: But I know of and I won't name names here, but I know of several
occasions in which that was the case.

[00:18:41] Jeffrey Feldberg: Well, please share.

[00:18:43] Chris Morton: Yeah. One of the things that often can happen in several market
segments in the world that you discuss here on your podcast is the fear rather
of this, of the large second mover. And what I mean by that is a case in which,
a young company may develop something that's extremely attractive. Let's look
at two cases, one in which it's attractive, but they have no protection,
another in which they have protection.

And it's equally attractive.

There are many a case, not the
least of which even is giants like apple and Microsoft and others. I don't know
about Google, so I won't quote them that, the first out there had some initial
success until the second major company who could put 50 engineers on the
opportunity simply ran over the first company and they had no records.

[00:19:39] Jeffrey Feldberg: Okay.

[00:19:40] Chris Morton: Now they're in lies the opportunity as well as the threat, because
if you are well protected again if it matches your business. This is not a cell
job on IP. This is actually a cautionary tale about when do you use IP, but
let's go to that situation for a second. So that large company wants to be in
the business that you're in and they have a trade off to make. They can take
you and the customers you've begun to capture as I'm sure you, you, and your
other guests talk to people about with your protective IP. And it will cost
them money or they can put a pay length of engineers on it that might take two
more years. But they still run the risk of coming up against you from an IP

Yes, there's an imbalance and
resources, but they come up against the issue of time.

[00:20:33] Jeffrey Feldberg: Okay.

[00:20:34] Chris Morton: I've seen a variety of cases, in smartphone components, in network
components. Now that the 5G rushes on good story for a different time.

[00:20:44] Jeffrey Feldberg: Absolutely. Particularly with your background

[00:20:46] Chris Morton: Yeah, exactly in which the trade-off was made, but a larger company
not to run over the smaller company was in protection, but to take them in, to
purchase them a nice event for the founders and their investors.

And use the protection they
have and the know-how that they have and actually get the market cheaper and
better. Not because they're angels they're not but because it's a fair business
trade off for them to make. So the question about is it, don't even start or
whether to start down a particular path.

And it, what if I can't defend
it is a much more nuanced one than can I afford you know, $350,000 in legal
fees. You have to know that this is obvious and I have no doubt you harp on
this continuously. You have to know who your potential partners, acquirers, and
competitors are and how valuable that is. Let me also make another point here
that in the same regime that people might want to consider. In my own
particular experience, the core idea is to protect your technology or however
defined. And let's again, it's supposed you've chosen to do so in a formal way.
What is the core mechanisms of how you would protect yourself? And honestly,
the answer is twofold. One is patents, which is the big subject of the day here
for you and I, and the other is.

Is it reverse engineerable
which has not to do with patents, but has to do with the practicality of can
people circumvent you in some particular way? I'll give you an example in our
nanomaterials company of late.

Oh, you can reverse engineer
the materials, but you can't know how they were synthesized.

So if you tried to do it and
put these materials together in some way, and I won't belabor the particulars
here, you would find it staggeringly difficult. And to that example of how many
in that say length of engineers, you would have to put on it. Even if you were
a patent cheater, it would be large.

I'll give you a second example.
Antenna is for smartphones. You can open a smartphone, take out the antenna.
It's a little piece of bent metal or a couple of pieces of bent metal for
things like wifi, et cetera, etcetera. And he was sure as heck can make another
one and put it in another phone.

But if you do it, won't work.
The reason it won't work is that it has to be matched and integrated into all
the conductors in the smartphone. So those are two examples where we did a lot
of patent work heaven knows, but we also made it extremely hard to reverse
engineer. So maybe it's trusted verify if you will, if this were treaty, it
would be trust with trust rather, but verify.

And so I'll offer that up to.

[00:23:43] Jeffrey Feldberg: Fair enough. And I'm gonna ask, a somewhat loaded
question in many ways. It isn't fair because everything is specific from one
company to the next. And so maybe Chris with the question you can just back the
envelope because I'm sure when it comes to IP, it can be like, you're saying
hundreds of dollars to millions of dollars.

But is there, you know, a
little bit of Pareto's law, you and I have talked about that in, in other,
podcasts. Is there a Pareto's law that, Hey, you know what, Jeffrey, there
actually, 80% of the IP falls into this 20% of a range in terms of cost. Any,
anything like that you have for us?

[00:24:22] Chris Morton: Yeah. I think so. Yes. And again, this is not intrinsic value. This
is simply the expenses to be paid. So if you sum up the little amount for the
first year and you imagine that it takes several years, let's say about four,
typically to five to get full approved status in a particular country.

And along the way, you've got
questions raised by patent reviewers in our country and country X and Y, and Z.
And then once filed and approved, you have maintenance fees. It doesn't end
there of about $5,000 a year. So for a given patent through that life cycle,
It's typically on the order of 25 to $50,000.

And it does vary.

[00:25:08] Jeffrey Feldberg: For sure. And so, Chris, again I'm talking such
generalities it's, really putting you in a little bit of a challenging
position, but you're a smart guy and you can give us some insights with that.
So again, I know it's gonna vary case to case company to company investing 25
to $50,000, to get something formally registered, to separate a company.
whether it's the ability to get new clients or even on some kind of liquidity
event or Exit, which is what we're all about here at Deep Wealth. Again any
back of the envelope, kinds of ROI numbers here, or, hey, Jeffrey, you know,
not necessarily with my companies, but I've seen this out there. And here's
what I've typically found.

[00:25:48] Chris Morton: Yeah, sure. I'll give you a couple of examples of each first of all
when we talk about this, let's also put this expense in context.

[00:25:58] Jeffrey Feldberg: Okay.

[00:25:58] Chris Morton: Certainly there are individual owners and certain kinds of business,
and my hat is off to them. Let me first say that have simply not taken a lot of
venture capital and bootstrapped themselves up.

I have great respect for that.
Often in the heavier tech area, it's difficult to do that. And if you look at
the statistics of fundraising in these heavier tech sectors, You'll see that in
the course of raising capital, whether it be from venture capitalists may or
may not be good from strategic partners,

From debt financing, as you
begin to get customers, which I bet you probably have talked about here, from
time to time, it's not uncommon that, oh, from five or 10 million to 50 million
or more is necessary for a whole variety of. For manufacturing, for engineering,
et cetera. So one, one, one style answer to that is to look at it and say, if
you and your board, your investors are looking at, half a million dollars. Not
initially, but in the course of several years, as a portion of those
multimillion-dollar investments to shore up your company.

It's not terribly unusual that
it's used as a good thing.

And so, you know, one way to
look at the answer to your question is put it in context of the totality of
what's necessary.

[00:27:23] Jeffrey Feldberg: Got it. Okay. With all of this said, though
clearly, you're making a terrific case here, Chris of why this should be done.
And I'm gonna maybe put it out there a little bit, but it sounds like, again,
not always 25 to $50,000, but a lot of times it is, it sounds based on that you
can really leverage that and get a terrific ROI.

But what about the flip side?
I'm wondering, when does it not make sense? Maybe you do have something unique
and it is novel to you from an IP perspective, but in your experience, Chris,
if you were advising that company or even if it was your own company, you'd be
like, you know what? Sure.

We can go do this, but I don't
think it's the smartest thing for us to do.

[00:28:06] Chris Morton: Yeah and I wanna say yet again here, I'm not selling doing patents.
What I'm suggesting people do is take a hard look at whether it's part of the
inherent value for their companies. That's my core point. So what are, to your
point, Jeffrey, what are some of the cases in which it would not make terrific
sense? I'm gonna makeup examples and these are not real and therefore probably
not accurate because it, in my own particular case it was valuable.

And I'll end with one on the
sell-side, by the way, part of the value, when you were purchased by another
company, as we've been fortunate enough to be is what contributes to the value
of your company. So let's hold that and go back to cases where it may not work.
I have designed a platform for and breakfast ends throughout the Northeast
mountain region, in order to share reservations and share experiences in some
more unified way that makes people choosing among them easier.

And you knowing their words
easier. And please folks, when you're listening, don't argue with you example.

[00:29:23] Jeffrey Feldberg: We're gonna run with. You're being very creative
here, Chris. We're just gonna run with it and hats off to you on the spot.

[00:29:28] Chris Morton: So in a case like that, what is my value? That's right. It is it
likely I'm creating brand new technology to make the experience of travelers
and in-keepers better? No, I'm probably a technology-enabled company in which
the value I'm creating is in the connectivity and experience. Would I in a case
like that and our listeners can imagine 10 others that I haven't chosen in real-time
here that are probably better, but in a case like that, it's highly likely
that's not a good way to go highly likely.

 Another example, that's a
little bit closer to home that might still be surprising is I'm putting
manufacturing locations in parts of the world that are near technology
companies that don't have their own manufacturing.

Now it sounds heavy tech and it
is, and unless they've developed a easier, quicker, and cheaper way to
manufacture, there's still tremendous value being added there, but perhaps not
worthy of patent violence.

[00:30:32] Jeffrey Feldberg: And as you're going down this path, Chris the
wheels are spinning here, and something that, that, it came out of what you're
saying. Here's a question for you because let's reverse engineer, the reverse
engineer here. Maybe you do come up with some really novel and unique

You don't get the IP on it. And
then I've seen this. In fact, some of my businesses have been on the flip side,
the other end of this, another company comes along. They do get the IP and now
they start suing everyone. They're like a patent troll or an IP troll, and
they're suing everyone in the industry just trying to get a cash grab on things.

Can you talk to us a little bit
about that of how A that can happen and B perhaps how we can be a little bit
more proactive and not defensive in that kind of situation?

[00:31:20] Chris Morton: That's a very good question. First comment I'd offer is that the
honest answer is and please tell me in good discussion here, whether this
matches your experience. There's no way to stop people from attempting it.
There just isn't.

The question becomes, and this
is, again, a more subtle answer I do have experience in is how do you defend

How do you defend that? Because
you know, the world is ain't always nice. And we know that and our listeners
know that. One of the things that I, we may have talked about in the prior
podcast, or perhaps, you and I can discuss it in the future is the importance
of strategic partnerships.

And why am I going off in that
direction when we're talking about that? In our particular case, let's talk
about the antenna company that we created for smartphones in which we sold
hundreds of millions of these into the likes of Samsung and others around Asia
and here. Never made it into apple by the way, shame on us, but it was, it
didn't stop.

It didn't stop a very nice
event for us. So the point I'm making is that we had a very powerful friend.

There wasn't. Yeah, you
probably know where I'm going here, but for the other folks, there are, we were
a strategically important supplier to an extremely big aggressive company with
deep pockets. And somebody, began that action, not just against us, but against
others. And I'm not gonna go into every detail, but they stopped really quickly
because there it's a small industry and the target grab was for technology that
was close enough so that it would affect our powerful partner. I have seen
other cases. This is not a guarantee. It doesn't mean you can necessarily get
this way, but there are ways in this business, to shelter yourself to some
degree, I can tell you that while big companies like Apple and Samsung and LG,
and some others in my world are tough on their suppliers, but they're also
protective for selfless reasons.

And so things can be done
there. Are there horror stories? No. Yes. There are but the question is, would
you never file?

[00:33:37] Jeffrey Feldberg: In this case, Chris, what it sounds like is,
here's where the IP can be working for you, particularly if you're dealing with
a larger company who wants to protect themselves. So if you don't have the IP
and something that you've registered and you've gone through the formal
process, maybe they won't even work with you.

And if you do have it in
something comes along that really shouldn't like it did in your case, it's in
their best interest to really help you out because they're helping themselves
out at the same time. So it's perhaps an unintended consequence, but a really
good one to have in your corner when you have that kind of protection.

[00:34:13] Chris Morton: There really are. And again, just as a hook for perhaps a future
discussion down the road one day.

The value of strategic
partnerships and I mean, young company and big strategic partners. Not a
company of your own scale in what I'm discussing now are multiple. If they're
properly constructed, they are really valuable relationships on many fronts,
including becoming a suitor down the road.

[00:34:37] Jeffrey Feldberg: It's a winding curvy road that goes in many
directions. Oftentimes it sounds like we don't know where, but when it's done

[00:34:45] Chris Morton: That's why it's risky. No one said it wasn't risky, Jeffrey. Where
our job is to remove some of the risks. I would, if not end with, add something
here too. When it comes to value of your company. When it comes time to
maximize your wealth to your peers approach to these podcasts. If again, it
made sense to begin with in all the discussions we just had in the last 30 or
40 minutes, the value of the IP can be material.

I have had one company not too
distant in the past whose technology was good and there was a very nice, there
is a very nice patent portfolio.

[00:35:27] Jeffrey Feldberg: Yes.

[00:35:28] Chris Morton: However it's early in the market adoption for reasons. A patent
portfolio to those larger companies that have the time to wait and the scale of
other engineers to put on it when the market opens up still gives you a
particular value to the company. Should you choose to Exit now versus later?

And just there is in valuing
entire companies, there are valuation companies that will come in and value
your IP by their access to recent sales of IP and who bought them. And for what
reason and how well they match to the situation at hand. And so this, again, it
sounds like I'm an IP salesman, but in those cases where it makes sense, he
said for the eighth time. It creates lasting value. If in fact you've done good
work and protected it well, but if it's there and it's valuable, it's part of
the inherent value of your company.

[00:36:29] Jeffrey Feldberg: And Chris quickly, let me ask this and I know
we're starting to bump up again sometime here, and as you repeatedly said
you're not an IP salesperson by any stretch, but you do have that experience.
So one of our listeners said, okay, you know what, Chris? I came in somewhat

I'm coming out. Yes. You know
what? I have something very unique in that there's some IP there. I wanna
protect it when we're looking around for an IP lawyer or an IP Advisor,
whatever the case may be, what should we be looking for to say, you know what?
Yes. Mary over here has B, C, and D that Jim doesn't. So I'm gonna have Mary
come on board and help me out.

[00:37:07] Chris Morton: Yeah. Again, I've had the pleasure of working with some outstanding
IP attorneys and I am now. The best attorneys that I've encountered are
competent in a few areas. And then the next question will be, how do I assess
those competencies and whether they are or not, but just to name them, one is
that they are creative in understanding your technology in enough detail.

This can be not only
time-consuming, but it can be intellectually intricate but understanding it in
enough detail so that they can build that ticket fence of defense around the IP
in the most effective way they have to get in. They have to have a certain
amount of legal creativity in the claims they make in the patents.

The second is that they have to
have an ear to the business decisions. Which is the subject of the last 45
minutes or so that they prompt you, the leader, the founder or to make
decisions about whether, what, where whether, or not to bother what else,
computer, that sort of thing.

And then they also have to have
a network of legal partners in other parts of the world, other jurisdictions,
therefore in Europe, Asia, et cetera, that can do some of the filing work over
there, but carry on in an honest and responsible way, because unless you're
just gonna do it here at home, which you may, but if you want to go further or
you have to go further for the reasons we've outlined you have to have those
partnerships. And so when I, the people that we're working with now, we've
known for some years, but if I were starting fresh I would look for those three
qualities. And I would interview not at all dissimilarly to how I'd interview
for a job with those three things as a criteria. You have to get close enough
to what the technology really does and be creative. Please give me a couple of
references of companies like mine. I don't mean the same business as mine, but
at that level of technical depth perhaps, who do you use in the rest of the
world, and how successful has been and, please introduce me to three or four or
five, relatively young companies that you've worked with that you feel good

[00:39:26] Jeffrey Feldberg: It sounds like success begets success. And when
you go to your network of people that you trust, who have had the success,
someone like yourself as an example, would be a very obvious person to ask, hey
Chris, who can you recommend? So some terrific advice there. We're at the point
where we're starting to wrap up and be a bit of a repeat for you, but what the
heck, I love how your mind works, and let's do that thought experiment as we
begin to wrap things up.

So again, Chris, you'll
remember the movie Back to the Future and the thought experiment that we do,
where you look outside your window, and lo and behold, the DeLorean car is
there. This is the car, the magical car that can take you to any point in time.
And so you hop on in Chris and you can go to any point in your life when you're
a young child, a teenager, adult, whatever point in time that would be Chris,
what would you be telling your younger self in terms of life, wisdom or lessons
learned or, hey, Chris do this, but don't do that.

What would that sound like for

[00:40:23] Chris Morton: I think the trick for all of us is to find that point in time where,
you know, where you best fit in terms of what you love it, ain't working. If
you love to do it.

And you'll probably excel
better there. So I would probably go back to the time when I was a young
researcher, and I would more quickly get into creating my own companies,
perhaps investing them earlier. Although it's hard to do that until you've had
some success but to do that It was more typical perhaps at that time to boil
away in larger companies.

Fascinating as they were. I met
fabulous people and of course, it's training, but I would probably go back to
that interval just out of grad school and perhaps more quickly gotten into the
things that light me up. And so I would counsel that now folks, if you're
listening, far easier to say than do as my youngest daughter is finding out.

I imagine that matches some of
the discussions that you've had fear on your various podcasts about success and
certainly finding the right people to advise whether it's in your own personal
career or once you've created a business Jeffrey to advise you on the parts of
it that are important and they have experiences that you don't have. It's just
so important. And I'll bet you that your listeners have heard many examples of

[00:41:50] Jeffrey Feldberg: Oh, absolutely. In fact, as you pointed out very
astutely, it's one of the common themes or threads when asking that question
that comes out and, you know, they're all smart, terrific, successful people.
So for our listener's words the wise, Chris was just spot on. And as we wrap
this up, Chris, if there's anyone who would like to reach out or just stay in
tune, in terms of what you're working on or what you're up to, what would be
the best place online?

[00:42:18] Chris Morton: I think send me a message on LinkedIn as many people say. I never
seem to wind down only further up. So since I've taken on some other
responsibilities, that's probably the best way to do it these days. And, I'll
do everything I can to respond. And thank you all out there for listening.

I appreciate it.

[00:42:37] Jeffrey Feldberg: Oh, wonderful. Listen as we officially wrap up
this episode, a heartfelt thank you Chris, for taking your very valuable time.
Sharing it with us here on the Deep Wealth podcast and is always please stay
healthy and safe.

[00:42:49] Chris Morton: You too Jeffrey in the same, all the rest of you take care.

[00:42:52] Sharon S.: The Deep Wealth Experience was definitely a game-changer for me.

[00:42:56] Lyn M.:
This course is one of the best investments you will ever make because you will
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[00:43:06] Kam H.:
If you don't have time for this program, you'll never have time for a
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[00:43:11] Sharon S.: It was the best value of any business course I've ever taken. The
money was very well spent.

[00:43:17] Lyn M.:
Compared to when we first began, today I feel better prepared, but in some
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need to fix.

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[00:44:18] Kam H.:
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[00:44:37] Sharon S.: Hands down the best program in which I've ever participated. And
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[00:45:03] Kam H.:
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[00:45:22] Jeffrey Feldberg: Are you leaving millions on the table?

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