Patent Thickets and Licensing: Empirical Findings from Japanese Listed Companies

Xingyuan Zhang (Okayama University) & Jiaming Jiang (Okayama University), “Patent Thickets and Licensing: Empirical Findings from Japanese Listed Companies”

In this paper, we employ licensing contract information disclosed in the ``Important Technology Contracts in Business" section of the Annual Securities Reports of Japanese listed companies to construct a licensing dataset, and propose alternative methods of measuring patent thickets to examine the effects of patent thickets on licensing contracts and patent portfolio races of Japanese companies. Our empirical results show that patent thickets are positively associated with licensing activities, and the patent applications of both licensors and licensee, while licensing activities help to alleviate patent portfolio races both for licensors and licensees.