Connect with us

Finance

PROFIT FROM PATENTS

Published

on

London Stock Exchange

By Robert Harkavy, IPR Connections.

What was once the preserve of a newspaper’s business section is, more and more, finding its way on to the front pages. This, of course, is partly due to the worldwide economic situation and its relevance to the population at large, but also because people are starting to recognise that what happens in the boardroom is increasingly significant to the wider world.London Stock Exchange

Few sentient beings could have failed to notice the Apple v. Samsung smartphone wars, which have been raging for what seems like eons in courtrooms across the continents – and patent squabbles about phone and tablet technology are by no means limited to these two industry behemoths.

The truth is that a company’s patent assets, while invisible, intangible and difficult to quantify, are – in many cases – the mainstay on which their business depends. Fail to manage, commercialise and protect these assets and you could have your own personal Kodak moment.

Recognition of the role of patent assets in the modern business environment is just part of a wider international movement to encourage, foster and reward innovation. Witness the UK’s Patent Box, the America Invents Act or the recent streamlining of the European Patent process. And with more and more companies investing ever-increasing sums in their patent assets, bankers and investors need to ensure that they don’t miss out on the innovation boom.

Registering just one patent can be a costly and time-consuming process, and one which requires expert input at every stage of the journey. But the rewards for both the company concerned and its investors are potentially eye-boggling: the next labour saving household appliance, wonder drug or gas extraction process, to pluck a few examples from the air, will all be covered by multiple patents. It is those financiers who have had the presence of mind to put their hands in their pockets at the outset who are best placed to reap the considerable rewards when the product finally reaches market.

Step forward the London Patent Summit, a new conference, expo and networking event designed to address the management, commercialisation and monetisation of patent assets. Taking place at the London Stock Exchange on 8th and 9th October, the Summit’s headline partners include CPA Global (www.cpaglobal.com), Deloitte (www.deloitte.com) and IP Value Added (www.ipvalueadded.com). Speakers are drawn from a range of industry thought-leaders, including Stephen Pattison from ARM Holdings PLC, Richard Vary from Nokia and Peter Elliott of Unilever.

“The format of the Summit is quite unique,” explains Slava Blagoeva, CEO of organisers IPR Connections. “As well as a traditional, theater style conference, we’re also providing a networking expo. Rather than commonplace exhibitions, with ranks of aluminium-framed stands, we’re providing all our participants with a table, chairs and free wifi . This will allow exhibitors to showcase their products and services to industry leaders and senior decision makers from a variety of patent reliant industries in an atmosphere designed to encourage genuine and meaningful networking.”

This brings us to one of the perennial problems associated with conferences: the fact that the delegate demographic is too often skewed in favour of service providers (lawyers, consultants, accountants etc) – and frequently to the detriment of the genuine movers and shakers from industry. “This won’t happen at the London Patent Summit,” continues Blagoeva. “For the first time, we’ve introduced a 75/25% delegate split, where at least 75% of our delegates are guaranteed to comprise senior personnel from patent reliant industry. This ensures that, unlike at some conferences, we do not find ourselves in the situation where a vast number of service providers are all vying for the attention of a comparatively tiny number of potential clients.”

Why should potential investors attend the Summit? For starters, investing in intangible assets is quite unlike any other type of investment. The vast amount of expertise on hand at the London Stock Exchange will ensure that investors will receive an essential grounding in what the process entails. Knowledge, after all, is power! It’s also worth pointing out that few events can offer participants the opportunity to spend two days in one venue with the likes of ARM Holdings, Shell, Deloitte, Nokia, Unilever, HM Treasury, MSD, the University of Oxford, GKN, British American Tobacco and more. Many might conclude that this alone justifies the entry fee.

For those wanting to participate in the London Patent Summit, the news is mixed. Major sponsorship opportunities are all but sold out, but a handful of packages remain. With regard to the expo, and as a result of demand, additional space has been secured from the London Stock Exchange, and a two day spot can be bought from £2,500. The news is a little bleaker when it comes to delegate passes but, again, the organisers have held a few back if you’re late to the party.  For more detailed information, visit www.londonpatentsummit.com, or call 020 7352 4356.

Finance

Global dividend payouts forecast to revive in 2021

Published

on

Global dividend payouts forecast to revive in 2021 1

By Joice Alves

LONDON (Reuters) – Global dividend payments could rebound by as much as 5% this year, a new report estimated on Monday, after the coronavirus caused the biggest slump in payouts since the financial crisis more than a decade ago.

Companies’ payouts to shareholders plunged more than 10% on an underlying basis in 2020 as one in five cut their dividends and one in eight cancelled them altogether.

A total of $220 billion worth of cuts were made between April and December, based on investment manager Janus Henderson’s Global Dividend Index. But there are signs companies are beginning to reinstate at least some of them.

Janus Henderson’s report warned that dividends could still fall 2% this year, in a worst-case scenario. But its best-case scenario sees 2021 dividends up 5% on a headline basis.

“It is quite likely we will see companies pay special dividends in 2021, utilising strong cash positions to make up some of the decline in distributions in 2020”.

Banking dividends will be likely to drive the rebound in payouts in 2021, the report said, after the European Central Bank and Bank of England eased blanket bans for lenders on dividends and buybacks. These were imposed during the first wave of the crisis to prepare for a potential increase in bad loans.

UK lenders Barclays and NatWest resumed payouts this month.

Last year, dividend bans meant banks cut or cancelled $70 billion of payments globally, according to the report.

But the overall global dividend cuts proved less dramatic than expected. In August, Janus Henderson had expected the virus to drive corporates to cut $400 billion worth of dividends, nearly double the eventual outcome.

A resilient fourth quarter of 2020 helped, said Janus Henderson. The likes of German car maker Volkswagen and Russia’s largest lender Sberbank restored payments.

Mining and oil companies cut dividends after a slump in commodity prices, while consumer discretionary companies also took a hit following lockdowns.

European dividends, not including Britain, fell by 28.4% on an underlying basis in 2020 to $171.6 billion. “This was the lowest total from Europe since at least 2009,” Janus Henderson said.

(GRAPHIC: Dividend cuts by region –

Global dividend payouts forecast to revive in 2021 2

In contrast, North American payouts rose 2.6% for the full year, setting a new record of $549 billion, the report said. Canada had the fewest dividend cuts anywhere in the world, the index showed.

Continue Reading

Finance

Former Bank of England Governor Carney joins board of digital payments company Stripe

Published

on

Former Bank of England Governor Carney joins board of digital payments company Stripe 3

By Kanishka Singh

(Reuters) – Mark Carney, former head of the UK and Canadian central banks, has joined the board of U.S. digital payments company Stripe Inc, days after the company was reported to be planning a primary funding round valuing it at over $100 billion.

“Regulated in multiple jurisdictions and partnering with several dozen financial institutions around the world, Stripe will benefit from Mark Carney’s extensive experience of global financial systems and governance”, the company said on Sunday, confirming a report by the Sunday Times newspaper.

Forbes magazine had reported on Wednesday that investors were valuing Stripe at a $115 billion valuation in secondary-market transactions.

A senior Stripe executive told Reuters in December that the company plans to expand across Asia, including in Southeast Asia, Japan, China and India.

The company offers products that allow merchants to accept digital payments from customers and a range of business banking services.

Stripe raised $600 million in April in an extension of a Series G round and was valued back then at $36 billion.

Consumer-facing fintechs have seen a boost to their businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, as people have been staying at home to avoid catching the virus and have increasingly been managing their finances online.

Carney, who headed the Bank of England and the Bank of Canada, had a 13-year career at Wall Street bank Goldman Sachs Group Inc in its London, Tokyo, New York and Toronto offices.

He is the United Nations special envoy on climate action and finance.

(Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by William Mallard)

Continue Reading

Finance

The potential of Open Finance and the digitisation of tax records

Published

on

The potential of Open Finance and the digitisation of tax records 4

By Sudesh Sud, Founder of APARI 

The world is undergoing huge changes at the moment. Between coronavirus pushing the economy to the limit and a group of Redditors challenging the financial market hegemony, people are questioning the role of established institutions. If finance doesn’t work to enable the economy, businesses or individuals, then who is it for?

Before the digital revolution, financial experts were seen as a necessity. They knew how things worked, what everything meant, could provide good advice and were employed to sit at the heart of the action. Now, trading can be done by anyone online through established platforms, with a wealth of information available to hand.

Yet, as the 2008 financial crisis proved, established financial institutions have made themselves too big to fail. Simply tearing down the existing financial system would leave many ordinary people, along with businesses and government treasuries, in ruin.

However, as legendary futurologist, Buckminster Fuller, once said: “You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”

Traditional banking models are already being upended by technology. Through Open Banking, challenger banks are able to connect services digitally, cutting inefficiencies and costs while speeding up transactions. Now, Open Finance is seeking to build on this model to connect financial services via technology, potentially making the existing financial model obsolete.

Just as Open Banking led to greater democratisation of money, Open Finance has the potential to transfer power back to individuals. Not only would this benefit society as a whole, but it would help minimise the boom-bust cycles that cripple entire economies. No individual would be too big to fail, and bailing people out would cost far less, having minimal impact on the economy overall.

With more information available to them, Open Finance businesses will be able to use technology to make better decisions instantly. Many people struggle to get onto the housing ladder due to a poor credit score, for example, yet they have been paying rent every month of their adult lives. Why, then, can they not access mortgages? A company called Credit Ladder is addressing this through Open Banking, reporting rent payments via challenger banks like Starling to credit agencies, helping good renters to access mortgages.

While it is still very early days for Open Finance, there seems to be an endless raft of possibilities to benefit individuals, businesses and national economies. Faster, more secure, and less risky access to credit can help grow the economy, transforming finance from something that benefits a few wealthy capitalists to something that enables growth in the real economy.

So how else could Open Finance benefit society?

Using Tax Information

Every working adult pays income tax. Some of us via self-assessment while others are enrolled in PAYE. Regardless, we all have tax records with a wealth of financial information that has been verified, at least in part, by HMRC.

This centralised repository of financial information could be put to better use, such as allowing credit reference agencies to better understand an individual’s risk profile or helping to prove income as part of a mortgage application. Unfortunately, HMRC is a black hole of information ‒ its sheer size and power sucks information in, but nothing comes back out again.

However, by Making Tax Digital (MTD), HMRC are effectively allowing individuals to keep validated tax records on the software of their choice. Software providers may then be able to use this information to enable certain aspects of Open Finance. The information doesn’t need to be protected by HMRC, it is the individual’s choice and responsibility over how to use their own information.

As MTD software develops, we will see it connected to Open Banking, allowing self-assessed taxpayers to connect their business account directly to the software, effectively getting their tax return completed for them by an AI program. They would simply check the details, add any adjustments, and click submit. HMRC would then validate the records, providing assurance for any financial institutions using that financial information.

More Growth, Lower Risk

With access to complete and validated financial information, lenders would be able to more quickly and accurately assess individual risk when considering a loan or mortgage application. This would greatly speed up the process of applying for a loan, whether for a business venture or property purchase, for example.

Take residential landlords, for example. They may own a few properties already, with equity coming out of their ears. If that landlord wants to obtain another property, they would need to get their accountant to assemble their financial information, complete a SA302, and send everything off to their mortgage advisors who would then validate the information before submitting the mortgage application.

The application can then take months to approve, slowing down the process and potentially leading to missed opportunities. Since property sales usually occur in a chain (the owner of the property you are purchasing is usually purchasing another property, and so on), these inefficiencies slow the process down for everyone and can have major impacts.

If, however, mortgage applicants could simply share validated financial/tax records, mortgage providers could use that information to make quick decisions with reduced risk. What’s more, applicants could share only relevant, high-level information, rather than expose their entire financial history.

Individual Risk Management

Currently, individuals can manage their credit score/risk profile via third party providers like Experian, Equifax and TransUnion. These credit reporting agencies use limited information, such as credit cards, store cards and loans to assess risk. Individuals need to understand what factors each agency uses in order to ‘game’ the system.

For example, someone who has always been careful with their money, kept to a strict budget and never taken out a loan or credit card will have a far worse credit rating than someone who regularly uses debt to finance their lifestyle. So, even though they may have amassed a good deal of savings, they cannot get a good deal on a loan or mortgage.

With Open Finance, these individuals would be able to quickly prove their earnings, spending, and savings, decreasing their risk profile in line with reality. Rather than crude measures of creditworthiness, financial institutions would be able to use accurate and validated information to make quick decisions based on realistic risk. This both transfers more power to individuals and contributes to faster growth while reducing overall risk.

As a centralised repository for validated financial information, MTD providers will be in a unique position to develop a two-sided marketplace for finance, allowing credit providers to match products to individuals’ risk profiles. When a customer needs a loan, credit card or mortgage, they can simply browse products for which they have already been approved, applying and receiving finance instantly.

Empowering PAYE Taxpayers

Currently, PAYE taxpayers have little, if any, visibility or control over their tax contributions. They will see the amount paid in tax and national insurance, but to claim any allowances requires them to submit a self-assessment tax return. For most PAYE taxpayers, this simply doesn’t seem worthwhile.

Yet, self-employed taxpayers can claim for things like travel to their place of work, a proportion of living expenses when working from home, even their lunch. These things are necessary for productive work yet, for PAYE taxpayers, come out of their already taxed income. Meanwhile, businesses tend to make use of every tax allowance available to them.

This imbalance could be rectified with Open Finance connected to tax software. As MTD becomes a validated system for self-assessed taxpayers, a new version could be developed for PAYE taxpayers, putting them in control of their tax and finances. Not only would they be able to benefit from Open Finance in the same way as self-assessed taxpayers, but they will also be able to claim for reasonable allowances. What’s more, HMRC/the Treasury/the government would be able to hold employers accountable for pay disparities and unreasonable tax avoidance.

Open Finance, then, has the power to speed up and reduce the cost of obtaining and providing finance. It would make the finance system fairer and most transparent while distributing financial power, and help to avoid the creation of too big to fail financial institutions and the boom-bust cycle that has become unfortunate features of modern capitalism.

Ultimately, Open Finance has the potential to help the UK and other nations recover from the seemingly unending series of crises that have plagued the early 21st century by allowing people to access finance quicker in order to grow their business and personal finances while reducing risk, inefficiencies, and costs.

Continue Reading
Editorial & Advertiser disclosureOur website provides you with information, news, press releases, Opinion and advertorials on various financial products and services. This is not to be considered as financial advice and should be considered only for information purposes. We cannot guarantee the accuracy or applicability of any information provided with respect to your individual or personal circumstances. Please seek Professional advice from a qualified professional before making any financial decisions. We link to various third party websites, affiliate sales networks, and may link to our advertising partners websites. Though we are tied up with various advertising and affiliate networks, this does not affect our analysis or opinion. When you view or click on certain links available on our articles, our partners may compensate us for displaying the content to you, or make a purchase or fill a form. This will not incur any additional charges to you. To make things simpler for you to identity or distinguish sponsored articles or links, you may consider all articles or links hosted on our site as a partner endorsed link.

Call For Entries

Global Banking and Finance Review Awards Nominations 2021
2021 Awards now open. Click Here to Nominate

Latest Articles

Australia says no further Facebook, Google amendments as final vote nears 5 Australia says no further Facebook, Google amendments as final vote nears 6
Top Stories5 hours ago

Australia says no further Facebook, Google amendments as final vote nears

By Colin Packham CANBERRA (Reuters) – Australia will not alter legislation that would make Facebook and Alphabet Inc’s Google pay...

GSK and Sanofi start with new COVID-19 vaccine study after setback 7 GSK and Sanofi start with new COVID-19 vaccine study after setback 8
Top Stories5 hours ago

GSK and Sanofi start with new COVID-19 vaccine study after setback

By Pushkala Aripaka and Matthias Blamont (Reuters) – GlaxoSmithKline and Sanofi on Monday said they had started a new clinical...

Optimising and Securing Device Management in a Corporate Environment 9 Optimising and Securing Device Management in a Corporate Environment 10
Technology5 hours ago

Optimising and Securing Device Management in a Corporate Environment

By Nadav Avni, Marketing Director at Radix Technologies The proliferation of digital devices used in every organisation has only grown...

Don't ignore "lockdown fatigue", UK watchdog tells finance bosses 11 Don't ignore "lockdown fatigue", UK watchdog tells finance bosses 12
Top Stories5 hours ago

Don’t ignore “lockdown fatigue”, UK watchdog tells finance bosses

By Huw Jones LONDON (Reuters) – Staff at financial firms in Britain are suffering from “lockdown fatigue” and their bosses...

The pandemic has changed consumer behaviour and retailers need to adapt 13 The pandemic has changed consumer behaviour and retailers need to adapt 14
Business5 hours ago

The pandemic has changed consumer behaviour and retailers need to adapt

By Mary Keane-Dawson, Group CEO of TAKUMI It’s no secret that the retail industry has been badly hit by the pandemic,...

2021: A year of digital enablement 15 2021: A year of digital enablement 16
Technology6 hours ago

2021: A year of digital enablement

By Peter O’Halloran, Vice President, Global Digital Commerce, Fiserv In 2021, digital innovation will continue to accelerate, allowing businesses to...

5 Trends Driving the Future of Customer Service in 2021 and Beyond 17 5 Trends Driving the Future of Customer Service in 2021 and Beyond 18
Business6 hours ago

5 Trends Driving the Future of Customer Service in 2021 and Beyond

By Matt McConnell, CEO of Intradiem 2020 ignited radical shifts for contact centre operations with the move to a remote...

World shares sink as bond yields, commodities surge 19 World shares sink as bond yields, commodities surge 20
Trading6 hours ago

World shares sink as bond yields, commodities surge

By Ritvik Carvalho LONDON (Reuters) – World shares sank on Monday as expectations for faster economic growth and inflation battered...

UK regulators need global 'competitiveness' remit, says UK Finance body 21 UK regulators need global 'competitiveness' remit, says UK Finance body 22
Top Stories6 hours ago

UK regulators need global ‘competitiveness’ remit, says UK Finance body

By Huw Jones LONDON (Reuters) – Keeping the City of London competitive should be an “across the board” objective for...

Creating a B2B lead generation strategy in the Covid economy 23 Creating a B2B lead generation strategy in the Covid economy 24
Business6 hours ago

Creating a B2B lead generation strategy in the Covid economy

By Petra Smith, Founder and Managing Director of marketing agency Squirrels&Bears The pandemic has transformed the relationship driven B2B environment in...

Newsletters with Secrets & Analysis. Subscribe Now