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Intangible Assets: Valuation and Economic Benefit

ISBN: 978-0-471-67131-2
176 pages
March 2005
Intangible Assets: Valuation and Economic Benefit (0471671312) cover image


Praise for Intangible Assets

"In Intangible Assets, Jeffrey Cohen presents an informative, thought-provoking and practical look at an increasingly important component of every business's worth. He describes the art and science of identifying assets that have clear economic benefit, but are typically not found on the balance sheet, and he provides an invaluable framework within which the reader can value these assets, despite their elusive nature."
--Rick Westervelt, President, Skylist, Inc.

"Jeffrey Cohen's integrative approach to conceptual issues of intangible assets is creative and a refreshing contribution. He brings law, economics, finance, and accounting to the same table, which results in a comprehensive framework for understanding how value is created and sustained. His construct of 'proto-assets' and 'portfolio of intangible economic benefits' is key. Written in an easy-to-read style with many practical examples, this book will be useful for both novice and experienced professionals."
--W. Dana Northcut, PhD, Adjunct Associate Professor of Accounting Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago Principal, Chicago Partners, LLC

"This volume is the perfect resource for newcomers to IP valuation. Through lucid explanations and well-chosen illustrations, it does for the reader exactly what a valuation expert should do for a client--it makes the abstract concrete. But this volume is not just for the novice; it holds insights that will be useful to IP experts in law, accounting, and economics."
--Edward F. Malone, Partner, Jenner & Block LLP
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Table of Contents



CHAPTER 1: Introducing Intangibles.

How This Book Is Organized.

What Is Valuation Anyway?

CHAPTER 2: History and Taxonomy.

Types of Intangible Assets.

Identifiable Intangibles.

Unidentifiable Intangible Assets.


What Is Not an Intangible Asset.


Additional Resources.

CHAPTER 3: Theory of and Research on Intangible Assets.

Some Economic Characteristics of Intangibles.

Growth in Intangible Assets.

Researching the Value of Intangible Assets.


CHAPTER 4: Accounting for Intangibles.

Identifiable and Unidentifiable Intangible Assets.

To Expense or Capitalize.

Goodwill Paradox: Why Ever Pay More than Fair Value?


CHAPTER 5: Portfolio of Intangible Economic Benefits (PIE-B).


Introducing the PIE-B.

Perspectives on the PIE-B.


CHAPTER 6: Income Approach and Intangibles.

Steps to the Income Approach.

Present Value Formula.

Estimating the Discounted Cash Flows.

Soda Machine as Proto-Asset?


Income Approach and Intangibles.

Options Model.


Appendix to Chapter 6.

CHAPTER 7: Market Approach and Intangibles.

Introduction to the Market Approach.

Some Features of the Market Approach.

Elasticity: A Useful Economic Concept.

Comparable Firms.

Unidentifiable Intangibles and Comparables.


Appendix: Sources for Comparables.

CHAPTER 8: Cost Approach and Intangibles.

Original Cost.

Book Cost.

Replacement Cost.


CHAPTER 9: Intangible Assets and Litigation.

Panduit Test.

Market Definition.

Georgia Pacific Factors.

Trade Secret Framework.

Famous Dilution.


CHAPTER 10: Intangible Assets: Strategy and Securitization.

Bowie Bonds.


Dynamic Securitization.


Off–Balance Sheet Intangibles.

Insecurity—The Case of the Recording Industry.


CHAPTER 11: Conclusion.

Toward a Theory of Ephemeral Assets.


Additional Resources.




About the Author.

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Author Information

JEFFREY A. COHEN is a principal of Chicago Partners, a finance, economics, valuation, and accounting consulting firm that specializes in the application of those disciplines to legal and regulatory matters. Cohen is also Director of the Intellectual Property Practice at Chicago Partners. He has been a consultant to Fortune 500 companies, government, and the nation's premier law firms for more than sixteen years. Cohen earned his BA and MBA from the University of Chicago.
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