Press Release

Ocean Tomo Auctions Announces Impressive $12.8M Results from Fall 2008 Live Intellectual Property Auction

By SpaceRef Editor
November 3, 2008
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Ocean Tomo Auctions Announces Impressive $12.8M Results from Fall 2008 Live Intellectual Property Auction

Groundbreaking Sale of Exclusive Rights to NASA Patents Exponentially Expands Commercialization Opportunities while Traditional Sales Remain Strong

CHICAGO, Nov 03, 2008 Ocean Tomo Auctions, LLC — the auctions arm of Ocean Tomo, LLC, the leading Intellectual Capital Merchant Banc(R) firm — today announced the results of its Fall 2008 Live IP Auction held on October 30th. Cumulative sales, including buyer’s premium, totaled $12,842,500, producing strong results for buyers and sellers alike, with further transactions anticipated to close in the coming weeks.

It was standing room only in the Chicago Cultural Center as a jazz band entertained attendees prior to the seminal event of Ocean Tomo’s Fall IP Auction & Conference. The auction included several rounds of active floor bidding, with bids sporadically jumping in increments of $5,000 to $100,000 to the delight of the auctioneer and audience alike. In addition to the auction, attendees gathered in Chicago for two days of networking events and conference tracks, which included dynamic speakers and panel discussions covering timely industry topics. More than 500 attendees gathered for the event including large corporations, small and mid-size companies, research institutions, government agencies, legal firms, sole inventors, investors and the media.

NASA and Ocean Tomo Innovation Partnership

The sale of exclusive license rights to Lot 56 was a true highlight as it marked the groundbreaking sale of rights to 11 NASA-owned patent assets and the first time government-owned patents have been sold at public auction. The patents, related to a new signal processing technology called the Hilbert-Huang transform (HHT), sold for $55,000 plus an ongoing royalty stream.

“We are delighted that exclusive rights to our patents were sold at auction. Not only does this sale maximize the value of the award-winning HHT technology by transferring it to a commercialization partner, it also benefits the U.S. taxpayers and the domestic economy,” said Nona Cheeks, chief of NASA Goddard’s Innovative Partnerships Program Office. “This is a great start and validation of our partnership with Ocean Tomo to commercialize NASA-funded technologies. There were several institutional hurdles to overcome to allow us to participate in the auction and given the many challenges, we’ve found the dedication of the Ocean Tomo team to be truly impressive.”

“We are greatly encouraged by the first time offering of NASA’s patents via public auction as it has the potential to unleash to a broader audience the federal government’s warehouse of technologies for the benefit of creating new commercial products, processes, services and new businesses,” commented James Malackowski, Ocean Tomo’s CEO. “Additionally, we’ve already been contacted on the two remaining NASA lots and have strong indication that these will transact post-auction.”

Successful Sales Result in Millions for Sellers

Lot 61 was sold by Carlson Wireless Technologies, Inc. for more than double the seller’s estimated value of $400,000 published in the auction catalogue. The final total for Lot 61 was $902,000, with buyer’s premium. Combined with the sale of another Carlson Wireless Lot, Ocean Tomo brought in over a million dollars for the company in a matter of hours.

“The results of these sales and the work of the Ocean Tomo staff have exceeded my expectations by two-fold, said Jim Carlson, CEO and Board Chairman of Carlson Wireless. The entire process, from positioning the value of the Lots to attending the conference, has been educational and validates the auction platform.”

Other successful sellers included venture-backed companies, individual inventors and large multi-national corporations such as SCM Microsystems (U.S.) Inc. SCM’s patents relate to management of flash memory and sold as for $1,815,000 making it the highest selling lot at auction.

The chart below displays results by lot. All auction results will be listed on Patent/Bid-Ask(TM) at

Lot Number    Total Sale Amount      Lot Number    Total Sale Amount
Lot 1         $110,000               Lot 51a       $451,000
Lot 2         $275,000               Lot 52        $275,000
Lot 2a        $357,500               Lot 56        $55,000
Lot 5         $165,000               Lot 59        $198,000
Lot 6         $220,000               Lot 61        $902,000
Lot 7         $192,500               Lot 64a       $220,000
Lot 8         $176,000               Lot 65        $110,000
Lot 10        $561,000               Lot 65a       $110,000
Lot 12        $132,000               Lot 69        $110,000
Lot 13        $121,000               Lot 70a       $110,000
Lot 15        $11,000                Lot 71        $357,500
Lot 19        $1,815,000             Lot 71a       $110,000
Lot 20        $220,000               Lot 72        $11,000
Lot 21        $110,000               Lot 73        $110,000
Lot 22        $660,000               Lot 74        $110,000
Lot 26        $27,500                Lot 75        $214,500
Lot 27        $165,000               Lot 77        $247,500
Lot 28        $247,500               Lot 79        $275,000
Lot 30        $110,000               Lot 80        $330,000
Lot 36        $82,500                Lot 81a       $825,000
Lot 37        $330,000               Lot 83        $82,500
Lot 38        $110,000               Lot 84        $192,500
Lot 40        $165,000               Lot 86        $247,500
Lot 43        $495,000               Lot 87        $330,000

The auction was once again flawlessly conducted by Gooding & Company, one of the world’s premier auction houses recognized for setting numerous world records for sales at auction and by private treaty. The proceeding were led by an effective Master of Ceremonies, David Gooding, President and Founder of Gooding & Company, as well as an established and entertaining auctioneer Charlie Ross, who appears on the ‘Antiques Roadshow’ and ‘Flog it!’.

Upcoming Live Auction

The next Ocean Tomo Live IP Auction & Conference will be held on March 26-27, 2009 at The Ritz-Carlton San Francisco. The deadline for IP submissions is November 15th, and a listing of technology areas of interest can be found at

To submit IP for consideration or for more information on the auctions, please contact us at 312.377.4851 or or visit

For more information on Ocean Tomo services for government-owned patents, please contact Connie Chang at 240.482.8204 or

*Please note: All auction results are including buyer’s premium.

SpaceRef staff editor.