Allied Security Trust

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Allied Security Trust (AST) is a member-based patent holding company that helps protect members from patent infringement lawsuits by non-practicing entities.[1]


Members each contribute to the operating expense of the trust, and hold funds in escrow for the purchase of patents. Each member's escrow funds are used for the purchase of only those patents that they are interested in.[2] The members involved in the purchase are then licensed to the patents. After a certain period of time, the patents are sold or donated. This is known as a catch and release strategy. AST does not litigate.[1][3]

Turning to the key function of buy-side decision making – i.e., determining which patents to purchase – AST radiates out such authority to the extremities of the organization, where individual members decide whether to ante up funds on a case-by-case basis. The offices of the AST then serves to aggregate these funds and formulate a bid.

What is interesting about these fundamentally different processes is that, at least in theory, the AST process potentially taps into an intellectual wherewithal unrivaled in the market (think of the hundreds of senior engineers at each of the 20 or so AST members – that suggests some 2,000 highly skilled engineers in all).


Allied Security Trust has 11 public members in 2008, including:[1]

In 2012 official site listed 8 public members:

  • Avaya
  • HP
  • IBM
  • Intel
  • Motorola
  • Oracle
  • Philips
  • Research in Motion


  • Russell Binns, Jr., CEO [4]
  • Linda Biel, Vice President, Business Development[5]
  • Karl Maersch, Vice President, Portfolio Development and IP Transactions[6]
  • Kerry Hopkin, CFO[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Victoria Slind-Flor “Sun, EBay, Rock & Republic, Troyer: Intellectual Property”, July 1, 2008.
  2. ^ Scott Moritz, “Big Tech gets Legal Aid in the Patent Wars”
  3. ^ Joff Wild, IAM Magazine, "Why Sinking Markets Could Mean Real Opportunities for Patent Acquirers and Licensees", October 7, 2008
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ [2]
  6. ^ [3]
  7. ^ [4]

External links[edit]