The first tool to use is that of a “USE view of Patent Portfolios” as shown in the figure. For large corporations the vertical axis is used to segment the different business units of a large corporation (or business lines of a small company) in a range from those that are mature to those that are new ventures slated for growth. Across the top of the matrix are columns that categorize if the intellectual property, in this case patents, are being used commercially today, is in the business unit’s operating or strategic plans, is potentially strategic (being developed in R&D or in open innovation negotiations), or lastly, is outside the strategic business vision.
Inside the matrix we find that that art which lands in the upper left quadrant is slated for intellectual property growth via patent fences and continuing patent applications. The upper right quadrant contains art that can be effectively licensed outside the Corporation as it would protect new business opportunities that the company does not wish to pursue. Art in the lower quadrants is usually best abandoned or donated as mature businesses are often protected by brand-name and a dominant market position.