There's nothing intangible about Sam Khoury's credentials: BS in chemistry, MS in organic chemistry, a PhD in polymer chemistry, an MBA for good measure. It's appropriate; knowledge is Khoury's business. As Dow Chemical's intangible asset appraiser, Khoury puts a price tag on intellectual property. How does he appraise his own contributions? "The fact that my position exists confirms the evolution of a real need in business."
Name: Sam Khoury
Title: Intangible Asset Appraiser, Dow Chemical
Has Held Title For: 2 years
With Dow For: 13 years
Previous Title: Intellectual Asset Manager
Sam Khoury's phone rings when...
- Dow considers selling a business unit. Khoury values its intellectual property to help establish the selling price.
- Dow wants to license one of its patents. Khoury establishes a fair market value.
- Dow is midstream with an invention. Khoury steps in at the semicommercial stage to estimate the value of the innovation and help determine whether to go forward.
Sam Khoury hangs up the phone (politely) when...
- A business unit wants him to justify a bigger R&D budget.
Sam's Laws of Intangible Value:
- Knowledge is valuable only if someone is willing to pay for it.
- Value is relative. (An unremarkable patent may be valuable if a company needs it for a new process.)
- Knowledge that reduces costs can be more valuable than knowledge that generates revenues. (Cost reductions fall directly to the bottom line.)
A version of this article appeared in the November 1995 issue of Fast Company magazine.