The amendments to the Australian Patents Act
, which took effect in 2013, allowed Australian patent attorney firms to incorporate. As a result, several of this country’s largest firms have publicly listed and embarked upon aggressive mergers and acquisitions.
- In November 2014, Spruson & Ferguson listed on the ASX as Intellectual Property Holdings (IPH Limited). Since then IPH has acquired Fisher Adams Kelly, Pizzeys, Callinans and, most recently, Cullens.
- Shelston IP publicly listed as Xenith IP Group Limited in 2015 and is now in the process of acquiring Watermark.
- In August 2016, Davies Collison Cave and Freehills Patent Attorneys publicly listed under the holding company Qantm Intellectual Property Ltd.
Simultaneously, all of these listed firms have moved to acquire some of the smaller players. Big bucks and share options are being exchanged as competition for market share heats up.
There are two side-effects of these acquisitions: