Participants in Sub-Field of Interest

Understanding who are the top players and their interest in a specific area is clearly important to the project team when recommending if their company should participate or not. There’s no reason to pick an area of strong intense competition if other open areas exist that would be more easy for a new entrant to dominate. In the “Participants in Sub-Field of Interest” figure the top investors are competitors with specific business interests. These are 3M and Avery. These top companies typically use the technology internally. This was not a business problem for the team per se, but these top companies’ heavy investment, and track record of investing in intellectual property indicate that potential prior art clouds may be present. That said, licenses might be available from them for business use outside of their specific business focus. There are also complementary partners available. These could be of help once the project team selects a specific application it wants to pursue.