Tom Brady’s Super Bowl Win Increases Value

Whether you love to hate him or you are one of his biggest fans, New England Patriots’ quarterback Tom Brady is one of NFL’s biggest superstars. At the ripe age of 39, his latest Super Bowl win makes him even more valuable. Brady’s performance earned him his fourth Super Bowl MVP award. In the span of his 17-year career, he has become the winningest quarterback of all time with the most game wins and five Super Bowl victories. It is also telling that the only Super Bowl wins for the Patriots have been with Tom Brady as quarterback.

As the winningest quarterback of all time, Tom Brady still falls behind in stats compared to other quarterbacks in regular season. However, he is close in many categories. Given that he recently announced that he doesn’t plan to retire until his mid-40s, he is likely to set more records. This gives him ample opportunity to go down in history as the greatest, undisputed quarterback to play the game.

Brady’s amazing comeback in Super Bowl LI is likely to increase demand for Patriots tickets in 2017 as fans are anxious to watch him play more. In 2016, Forbes listed the Patriots as the second most valuable team after the Cowboys. The Super Bowl LI win and the desire to see what’s next for the quarterback superstar may help the team slip to the number one spot in 2017.

In the sports world, winning is everything. Those who show exemplary talent and consistent wins are offered many opportunities on and off the field. As such, Brady’s fifth Super Bowl win puts him in high demand. While he has already made millions in endorsements for such companies as Under Armour, Ugg Boots, Sirius, Visa, Nike, and others, he is likely to receive more opportunities for endorsements. Shortly after his win, he was also approached to be the subject of a book and film.

While his career has been riddled with negative publicity including the deflated football debacle, his talents continue to rise above these incidents. He is a man who seems to have it all, including a supermodel wife, a net worth of $180 million, endorsements, and a hot career. At this rate, when he does decide to retire, he may likely fall into the footsteps of other former greats including Brett Favre and Peyton Manning. They’ve continued to enjoy endorsement opportunities and have even made guest appearances on television and in movies. It will be interesting to see what opportunities come Brady’s way. In the meantime, he will likely continue to break records and build on his legacy in the sport.

Five Tactics Lady Gaga Used at Super Bowl LI to Increase Marketability

Celebrities become famous for exceptional talent, which may include singing, acting, dancing, and others. However, keeping their value entails more than just showcasing a talent. They must also heavily market themselves. For instance, while it may take months or even years to make a movie, the movie only lasts a couple of hours. In order to maintain their value in the meantime, celebrities often use endorsements to keep their presence in the eyes of the public. They may also tease the public with their next project. In the end, it takes a lot of effort for celebrities to continue proving they are valuable to the industry and spark interest in the public.

Finding various ways to promote themselves is almost another form of talent for celebrities. The more creative they get, the more noticeable they become. Take Lady Gaga for instance. She recently performed at the Super Bowl for basically free. However, she enhanced her value with this performance in the following five ways:

1. Performed for free. While Lady Gaga didn’t make money from her Super Bowl performance, she gained incredible publicity without having to share the stage with any other performer. The Super Bowl is thought to be one of the biggest forms of promotion in the United States as it receives more than 100 million viewers. For Gaga, it paid off well as sales surged 1,000% right after her performance!

2. Kept it clean. While Lady Gaga is known for her eccentricities, she was able to wow the audience without the shock value. For instance, there were no wardrobe malfunctions, gyrating, or other inappropriate gestures. She kept her performance appropriate for a wide and very public audience. This enhances her likeability and keeps the focus on her talent.

3. Avoided political commentary. Election years and the swearing in of a new president create a host of opinions worldwide. Many times celebrities use the limelight to publicly announce their political views. This can create negative publicity and lose the respect of fans who do not hold the same views.

4. Entertained. Lady Gaga kept the audience captivated by performing acrobatics, dancing routines, singing new and popular songs, and playing instruments. Her livelihood is as an entertainer and her ability to entertain on many different levels works in her favor.

5. Announced her tour. A few hours after her halftime performance, Lady Gaga strategically announced a worldwide tour. It was the perfect opportunity to make such a big announcement after a well-received performance in front of millions of viewers.

Maintaining a positive image in the eyes of the public is paramount for success to any celebrity. With Lady Gaga’s surge in sales and announcement of a worldwide tour, it appears her marketing tactics proved successful.

Athletes Capitalize on Likeness

In the sports world, many athletes become famous for their skills. Those who perform the best and win the most games receive more notoriety. Fans become attached to these players and want to see them often. These players even draw new fans as they become more famous and continue to play well. However, athletes are generally not in a sport for a lifetime. Due to age, injury, and loss of skills over time, they eventually have to retire. Retirement generally comes earlier for athletes than for professionals from other careers. Therefore, it makes sense for athletes who have become famous for their catchphrases, names, and skills to seek trademarks so others do not capitalize on something they’ve earned themselves.

Some famous athlete trademarks include the following: Tim Tebow’s “Tebowing,” LeBron James’ “King James,” Marshawn Lynch’s “Beast Mode,” Lance Armstrong’s “Livestrong,” Jeremy Lin’s “Linsanity,” and many others. As noted, athletes can trademark catchphrases, names of particular poses, nicknames, and more. Some may use their name in original ways (e.g., Lance Armstrong for Livestrong charity that raises money for cancer). If the athletes don’t trademark these things themselves, then fans and companies may capitalize on them. There have many cases where a fan uses a catchphrase associated with an athlete and tries to sell t-shirts or other products with that catchphrase.

With trademarks, these athletes may be able to negotiate sponsorships, gain revenue, and/or raise awareness for something (such as Armstrong’s cancer charity). By trademarking their names, they can make their brand outlive their actual sports career. For instance, Michael Jordan is still keeping his brand strong years after he retired from basketball. In fact, he recently won a case for the rights to his Chinese name. Furthermore, by applying for trademarks, these athletes can prevent others from misusing their names or leading people to believe they endorse something that they don’t. They can also prevent others from generating revenue based on their likeness.

Athletes who move to trademark their names, likeness, and catchphrases early in the process have more control over the use of these trademarks. Some athletes even start the filing process while still in college. Although they cannot capitalize on those trademarks while still in college, they can prevent others from capitalizing on their likeness. Two such athletes include Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott, both rookies for the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys. Both athletes applied for trademarks while still in college, which has proven to be a smart move. Prescott and Elliott have both had an extremely successful first year in the pros, earning their way into the playoffs. As a result, their catchphrases and nicknames have been displayed and used abundantly by their fans. With such a successful start, they are likely to land more sponsorships and sell more products associated with their trademarks. Since they already applied for trademarks, they can prevent others from exploiting their names and already have a head start on negotiating deals for sponsorships and products. It’s an overall smart strategy. It gives them more recognition both on and off the field, and provides them protection as well as other revenue avenues down the road.

Infringement Poses Many Challenges

Intellectual properties are valuable assets for their owners. They protect inventions, brands, published works, and much more by giving owners the right to sue others who try to take, replicate, or sell the protected work. Therefore, it is often in the best interest of inventors, writers, company owners, and others to invest in intellectual property so their efforts are not wasted. After all, it could take years to write a masterpiece or invent the latest and greatest digital device. In the event willful infringement takes place, IP owners could receive a considerable amount in damages, depending on the type of IP. For instance, for willful infringement on patents, a patent owner could receive up to treble damages.

While IP helps protect an owner’s assets, the effects of infringement are considerable. The following list indicates the challenges IP infringement pose.

1. Proving infringement can be challenging. Many infringement cases are not obvious or easy to detect. It may require reverse-engineering an invention or access to confidential information to prove infringement. In other cases, such as clothing designs, it may be difficult to prove that someone created a design first. Someone else could have worked on the same idea at the same time. Further, it may be impossible to detect infringement if the IP doesn’t protect a tangible product or the product is not widely available to the market with use in the public eye. In some cases, detecting infringement may not be possible with a high degree of certainty, rendering any eventual litigation risky.

2. Infringement can create considerable revenue loss. When another party infringes on IP, this party essentially takes away revenue that the IP owner could be generating. In some cases, IP owners can lose millions of dollars, e.g., pharmaceutical companies (brand name drugs), tech companies (smartphones), etc.

3. Infringement cases are costly.
They can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars and even millions. The cost of an infringement suit can be a substantial factor in determining whether enforcing IP is economically wise and ultimately whether that IP has more than some nominal value.

4. IP validity may be questioned.
An IP owner faces risks when initiating litigation against a company. For instance, a patent owner may be at risk of possibly losing the rights to the patent if the USPTO or a court finds the patent is either invalid or unenforceable, which can occur for a number of reasons.

5. Infringement cases take time.
The process of litigation is never a quick one. It takes infringement detection, lawsuit initiation, Markman hearing, trial prep, trial, and appeals. Cases can take months and even years to come to a conclusion. In the meantime, an IP owner risks losing time in the market and more revenue.

Infringement poses many problems to an IP owner and even to the infringer in the end. However, it may likely be worth the time for an IP owner to assert his rights that could ultimately lead to more revenue, damage awards, a settlement, and stopping the infringement completely. However, IP owners must know what is involved in the event of infringement to evaluate whether filing a lawsuit is the best approach.

IP Valuation During Divorce Proceedings

Statistics show that anywhere from 40% to 50% of marriages end in divorce. During a divorce, the couple divides assets, including homes, furniture, vehicles, and possibly intangible assets, such as intellectual property (IP). However, discovering the value of IP can be a complicated process. It becomes even more complicated when IP owners enter an engagement with preconceived notions.

IP valuation relies on many details for an appropriate and credible result. The same holds true when IP owners face a divorce. However, the details necessary for a credible and defensible valuation in the context of divorce proceedings involves considerations that may be different from that of another context in which the IP is valued. In fact, every IP valuation involves details that are pertinent to that particular entity; thus, making every single valuation unique in its own right. However, oftentimes, an IP valuation in the context of divorce proceedings often presents its own challenges.

The following five aspects make IP valuations during a divorce challenging:

1. False expectations. Many times, IP owners assume the value of their IP is much higher than its actual worth. Therefore, they enter into an IP valuation engagement with a particular value amount in mind. However, a credible valuation analyst reviews all aspects of intellectual property to determine an accurate value. Oftentimes, the amount the IP owners expect a valuation to reveal is considerably understated compared to their expectations.

2. Stage of IP. Most often, the IP is in the early stages of development. Therefore, it is often unproven. Without a workable invention and/or market acceptance, it is likely the IP does not hold much value.

3. Battle of valuation experts. Many valuation practitioners may seem appealing. However, without good knowledge of the industry and what IP valuation entails, IP owners may mistakenly choose a firm that does not have the background needed to provide a fair value determination on the IP at issue. This may lead to a contentious legal battle among valuation experts hired by opposing parties, thus increasing the cost of litigation.

4. Personal goodwill. There might be a certain element of personal goodwill attributable to the IP. This means that one party may have more invested in the IP, such as relationships, skill, knowledge, reputation, and others that an IP valuation analyst would have to consider in the valuation. However, in the event of a divorce, the personal goodwill may not matter if a judge determines an asset should be split evenly.

5. Capitalization. IP often requires a certain degree of capitalization, which gets cut in half as soon as the divorce takes place.

As indicated, IP owners must consider aspects about their IP and a potential valuation in divorce proceedings to determine whether hiring a valuation expert is worthwhile. As listed, many of these aspects can be disappointing, which is why IP owners going through a divorce often forego an IP valuation. They may not want to split assets based on their level of individual goodwill. They may not want to spend the money for an IP valuation to discover that the IP has no value. Either way, a competent IP valuation analyst would bring up these aspects the moment IP owners request an engagement. From there, the IP owners can determine whether a valuation is worth their time and money.

Fake Ads Wreak Havoc on Reputation

Brand names play a significant role in recognition for companies. Popular brand names that live up to their reputations attract more attention from consumers than brands that are not recognized or that do not live up to their name. However, even the best brands face negative publicity or become victims of fake stories. Recently, Fisher Price became the victim of a fake ad on social media.

Social media can play a big role for companies who want to promote their brands. After all, there are more than one billion users on social media. Therefore, social media creates lots of exposure for advertisements. Further, sites such as Facebook can target specific consumers with interests that match products or services advertised.

However, social media is prone to fake ads and news. In addition, it gives consumers the opportunity to express themselves, which could further exacerbate a non-existing problem, making it a disaster. Such are the risks that companies face when they become victims of fake advertisements.

Fisher Price was recently a victim of fake advertising when an advertisement reached social media with a new toy. Showcasing a Happy Hour Playset, the ad depicts a setting of toddlers surrounding a toy bar complete with toy beer bottles. While many viewers realized the ad was fake, other viewers became offended and reached out to Fisher Price. The difficulty today is that many ads and news stories may appear to be true. Therefore, viewers may not always know what is true and what is not, especially when the ad captures the look and feel of the real thing.

The fake ad creates a lot of work for Fisher Price in trying to convince viewers that it has no part in such an ad or that it does not condone a drinking playset for children. What has been a reputable brand name for years can easily be tarnished by a fake ad that is likely meant to be harmless. Since the ad can reach hundreds of thousands of people, it can be difficult to assure all viewers that the real-looking ad is not real. As a result, it could lower the value of the brand if consumers start to view it negatively and turn to other brands instead.

While many fake ads may be created out of boredom as a humorous prank, they represent nightmares for brand names.

Arnold Palmer’s Value Lives On

On September 25, 2016, the professional golf industry and its fans lost one of the greatest golfers in history. Nicknamed The King, Arnold Palmer played a critical role in the golf industry as a trailblazer, changing the way the world viewed the sport of golf.

During Palmer’s career, spanning more than six decades, he won 62 PGA Tour titles, 7 major titles, the PGA Lifetime Achievement award, and became one of the first inductees into the World Golf Hall of Fame. While his accolades are remarkable, Palmer’s role in the golf industry was more considerable than that of a golfer, in which he earned $7 million. He devoted his life to the sport of golf by designing hundreds of golf courses around the world, making golf a televised event, co-founding The Golf Channel, owning the Bay Hill Club and Lodge, among others.

At the time of his death, Palmer’s net worth was $700 million, making him one of the top ten richest athletes in the world. As is the case with many athletes, he accumulated the majority of his wealth beyond his athleticism. As already mentioned, he delved into a variety of avenues that involved golf beyond playing on the course. However, one of the biggest ways he earned his riches was through endorsements. In fact, he is among the top three athletes to make the most money via endorsements, falling behind only Michael Jordan and Tiger Woods at $1.3 billion. His charisma, skill, and likeability made him a top choice for promoting products. Companies he worked with include the likes of Coca-Cola, United Airlines, Westin, Holiday Inn, Ford, Pennzoil, and many others. At the time of his death, Palmer was still endorsing products!

In addition to his earnings as a professional golfer, his endorsements, and his golf course designing projects, Palmer launched wine and apparel products. He also had a drink named after him, in which the Arizona Beverage company distributes today, earning $200 million in 2015 alone.

As with the death of any notable athlete or celebrity, value tends to rise in the short term due to nostalgia. Nobody likes to lose a person; therefore, fans grab as much product as they can immediately following a death so they can hold on to something in remembrance. In Palmer’s case, his wine, apparel, and tea are likely to experience a spike in sales. In addition, he has a book that is set for release on October 25. Sales are likely to be higher than anticipated as a result of his death. In fact, the book soared to #1 on Amazon at the news of his death, despite the fact that it hadn’t been released yet.

Palmer leaves behind a big footprint in the golf industry. His name, products, and legacy will live on for years as a result, contributing to his value long after his death.

Olympic Mishap Affects Brand Image

The Olympics can bring much fame to athletes, especially to those who score medals. Ryan Lochte is such an athlete. He is one of the world’s most famous swimmers, earning 12 medals in the Olympics with six gold, three silver, and three bronze medals. His earnings make him one of the most decorated swimmers in Olympic history. All of this bodes well for brand image. However, Lochte’s actions while at the 2016 Olympics affect his brand image differently.

Brand image is all about perception. Consumers choose brands based on good experiences with products or people. If a brand touts that it is superior to other brands, and consumers find that this is true or believe it to be true, they continue to trust that particular brand. However, when a product fails, consumers begin to question its validity and seek another brand to take its place. This is why it is important for celebrities, such as Ryan Lochte, to maintain a good image.

At this year’s Olympic games, Lochte made up a story that made national news. Later, he confessed to embellishing the story. This leaves the public questioning his validity, making it harder for them to support him. Therefore, Lochte lost four major endorsements from Speedo, Ralph Lauren Corp., Syneron-Candela, and Airweave. Companies notoriously drop celebrities for bad behavior as they do not want to be associated with it or appear that they condone it. If they condone the bad behavior, then the public is likely to question the companies’ choice in a spokesperson, making it more likely that the public will choose other products in disagreement.

Therefore, Lochte’s actions affect his own brand image, making him less marketable. While he has earned many awards, people often remember other people more for their misdeeds because these come more shockingly. Thus, Lochte may be a decorated swimmer, but the shock value of his misdeed may harm his brand image for years to come. However, some celebrities overcome misdeeds (e.g., Tiger Woods, Michael Phelps, etc.) and eventually recover. Yet, this takes time. Ryan Lochte may have a bit of a break as he is slated to compete on “Dancing With the Stars.” This highly popular show will keep him in the limelight, for which he must be on his best behavior in order to redeem himself. Further, Pine Bros., a cough drop company, recently endorsed Lochte, claiming that the corporate world is too reactive and harsh.

Time will tell the damage to Lochte’s brand image. For now, he gets a few lucky breaks, but he doesn’t completely escape the havoc already done to his image. Perception is everything to a brand.

5 Ways P&A Is a Thought Leader in the IP Valuation Industry

As you know, Pellegrino and Associates is a premier intellectual property firm. We provide a variety of IP valuation services including copyright valuations, patent valuations, trade secret valuations, trademark valuations, early-stage valuations for both entrepreneurs and investors, software valuations, and tax valuations. We also determine royalty rates, testify in court as expert witnesses, and much more. While other IP valuation firms offer similar services, we thought we would highlight some of the criteria that make us a thought leader in the IP valuation industry.

1. Increased presence in the litigation setting.
Over the past few years, the number of law firms seeking our services has increased exponentially. This reaffirms how important IP valuations are in settling disputes. It also indicates our IP valuations and expert witness testimonies withstand scrutiny. In fact, one North Carolina Court stated that our firm’s work is “clearly in the mainstream of IP valuation methodologies” and that our qualifications are “outstanding.”

2. More than 350 engagements. Our firm boasts more than 350 engagements for more than 200 clients within every major industry sector. We have worked with Fortune 100, Fortune 500 companies, early-stage companies, individuals, law firms, and others. A few of the companies we have worked with include IBM, GE, Lockheed Martin, and others. The broad range of companies and repeat companies who seek our services affirms our position in the IP valuation industry.

3. IP valuation guide. Pellegrino & Associates president Mike Pellegrino has authored two editions of BVR’s Guide to Intellectual Property Valuation. He objectively captures the process for the valuation of intellectual properties in these guides, revealing the techniques that result in credible, defensible, and precise IP valuations. More than 700 of the guides have sold to a variety of customers, including attorneys, business valuation firms, competing IP valuation firms, tech transfer officers, and more. Given that few IP valuation guides exist on the market that detail the nuances associated with the valuation process further proves that our expertise is top level.

4. International presence. Our reputation as a premier IP valuation firm has landed us many opportunities on an international level. We have taught on IP valuation to officials from the governments of Brazil, Azerbaijan, Estonia, Thailand, Guatemala, and New Zealand on behalf of the U.S. State Department. Our finance- and software-related articles appear in internationally and nationally recognized outlets, such as IAM Magazine, CFO Magazine, MSNBC.com, FoxNews, and others. Also, a law firm has hired us to assist in international litigation.

5. Industry standards. We help set industry standards. Company president Mike Pellegrino was instrumental in helping to change Indiana law regarding the valuation of embedded application software for personal property tax reporting purposes and for the taxation of patent-derived income. He also authored a substantial portion of the administrative rules that Indiana’s Department of Local Government and Finance now uses to administer the evaluation of software appraisals for property tax matters.

These five criteria are just a few ways that our company holds thought leadership status and provides exceptional services in the IP valuation industry. Browse our website or contact us today to learn more.

Five Reasons to Hire an IP Valuation Firm

Intellectual property creates tremendous value for companies and individuals. The value amount varies among the different types of intellectual property. Therefore, determining the value of the entire intellectual property industry is impossible. Intellectual properties exist in several forms, including patents, trade secrets, trademarks, and copyrights, which equates to millions of assets. Without performing due diligence on each and every asset in existence, determining the value of the entire industry is unrealistic. This is because the purpose of the assets, the benefits they bring to consumers/companies, the type of assets, and many other reasons determine value. For instance, a trademark for a soft drink may not command near the value applied to a car that it does for fruit-flavored, sugar-sweetened water. To use a soft drink brand transaction as a basis for establishing the value of a car’s brand is not appropriate either–the two are altogether different in their application and industry.

While determining the value of the entire intellectual property industry is unrealistic, determining the value of individual assets and/or portfolios is paramount. Companies seek IP valuations for a variety of reasons. The following identifies five reasons to seek IP valuation services.

1. Capital formation. Many businesses or individuals seek to raise capital in order to develop an idea, start a business, or to get an invention to market. Capital formation is an especially important step for startups. However, in order to get investors to invest in a particular idea or business, IP asset owners must provide an idea of what their assets are worth. Otherwise, investors won’t invest in something for which the value is not known. It is too risky.

2. Bankruptcy. Just because a company goes bankrupt doesn’t mean that its assets are no longer valuable. By obtaining an IP valuation, a company can determine whether to sell assets to pay creditors or how to properly divide its assets among parties.

3. Expert Witness Testimony. IP valuations provide strong evidence in the court of law. IP valuation analysts spend considerable time reviewing and understanding the assets under consideration. They have to in order to provide a credible valuation. Therefore, hiring an IP valuation analyst can help provide strong evidence in the court of law.

4. Litigation consulting. Law firms hire IP valuation analysts to assist them in determining the worth of assets. Lawyers, plaintiffs, and defendants alike use valuations to give an accurate, unbiased view to present to the court system.

5. Tax valuation. Tax disputes arise often when parties disagree on an asset’s worth. IP valuation analysts provide an unbiased view that can help settle such disputes. IP valuations are also ideal for moving assets that could have tax implications.

As you can see, there are strong reasons to seek an IP valuation firm. At Pellegrino & Associates, we have conducted IP valuations for all of these reasons and more. To learn more about how we can help, contact us today!