• Kurt Schmidt

lessons from entrepreneurs on starting your own business, Part 12

Invest time in building relationships

Kasim Alfalahi, Chief Executive Officer and Founder, Avanci

Avanci, which provides one-stop access to essential patented technology for connected devices, was born from a belief that sharing technology through patent licensing could be more efficient. From my time as Chief Intellectual Property Officer at Ericsson, I’d seen the challenges first-hand, including the lengthy and complex negotiations needed to agree licenses between individual companies, and the costly disputes of the so-called smartphone wars. There had to be a better way.

We formed Avanci with the vision of being an independent, solution-driven marketplace. With a small team of experts, we spent months meeting with many of the world’s best-known companies. We worked hard to find solutions that were fair and transparent, and that all companies, large and small, could agree to. In 2017, we welcomed BMW as our first licensee, and since then we’ve grown to 16 auto brands (including Audi, Porsche, Volkswagen and Volvo) and 42 patent owners with portfolios of all sizes (including Ericsson, Nokia, Qualcomm, Sony and Vodafone) as Avanci members.

This continues to be a journey of discovery, one which motivates me every day. It also reinforces lessons learned as a youngster, helping in our family furniture business in Baghdad in the 1970s. Fundamental to success, whatever your industry, is investing time in building relationships, truly understanding what your customers need, then finding compromises that work for all while treating everyone with fairness and respect.

Read more at ALL ARK LLC

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