Licensing Executives Society (LES) Standards Committee Initiates Initial Public Review of Standard for Intellectual Capital in the Boardroom | Financial Buzz

Licensing Executives Society (LES) Standards Committee Initiates Initial Public Review of Standard for Intellectual Capital in the Boardroom

The Licensing Executives Society of USA and Canada (LES) today commences a 60-day public review period for the LES draft voluntary standard “INTELLECTUAL CAPITAL IN THE BOARDROOM: A Practical Standard to Enhance Value and Reduce Risk.” The public review period concludes on September 2, 2021.

Developed by the LES IC in the Boardroom Standards Committee LES Standards – Licensing Executives Society (LES) (, the draft standard defines a common set of expectations to which company boards can aspire in safeguarding shareholder value through appropriate oversight and activation of IC value identification, protection, commercialization and risk mitigation.

In our present day “new economy,” corporate boards are responsible for safeguarding shareholder value, which now includes oversight of material intellectual capital (IC). This IC may extend to everything created or usable by the enterprise, known as “structural capital.” The IC may include everything that everybody within an enterprise is capable of creating, known as “(human capital.’ Or, the IC may result from an enterprise’s strategic relationships, known as “relational capital.” Any of these situations may provide material value or competitive advantage for an enterprise that boards need to understand in order to ensure that appropriate resources are allocated safeguard assets of significant financial value and strategic importance.

LES encourages those interested in learning more about the standard, and contributing their thoughts and perspectives to its refinement, to take part in the public review by visiting the Public Review Website at

“Many of today’s enterprises are steeped in intellectual capital,” said LES President and Chair Gillian Fenton. “For example, while Uber does not own automobiles and Airbnb doesn’t own hotel rooms, companies like these drive disruptive business models yielding tremendous value. So, boards need to ensure they are appropriately overseeing their material IC in terms of its value-preservation and enhancement, as well as IC-related risk mitigation. The proposed standard may be a game changer for the business world in terms of corporate directors’ oversight of some of their company’s most valuable, yet often least understood, assets, that is embodied in their IC.”

The LES IC in the Boardroom Standards Committee is led by subject-matter experts who are board directors and executives from organizations that are large and small, private and public. The document contains a set of management system requirements around IC that is applicable to all organizations at any level in all business sectors, regardless of type, size, geographic location, industry sector, products, or services provided.

The LES Standards Initiative has encouraged IP thought leaders around the globe to participate in the public review of LES draft standard throughout its development. As an accredited standards developer of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), LES now is providing a 60-day public review period to encourage manufacturers, distributors, and any interested stakeholders to represent each organization’s best interests while helping to shape this field for the future.

This most recent draft of the standard incorporates the perspectives provided by stakeholders during a previous public review period a year ago. Upon completion of the public review period, the standard must appropriately address the public comments, receive approval from the LES Board of Directors and an affirmative vote from the organization’s Consensus Standards Partnership (CSP) before it is adopted.

“It was a rigorous process for the LES Standards Committee to develop this standard,” said Committee Chair Paul Roberts. “Our goal is to provide methods that enable boards to better understand and evaluate their company’s material IC and management strategy in their oversight of IC value-enhancement and risk mitigation.”

Join the LES Standards Initiative

The ANSI-accredited LES Standards program offers enterprises and individuals the best practices and standards they need to improve the way they do IP transactions, protect their innovation, use IP in their business strategies, and manage third-party IP. To learn more, visit:

About the Licensing Executives Society (U.S.A. and Canada), Inc.

Established in 1965, the Licensing Executives Society (U.S.A. and Canada), Inc. (LES) is a professional society of 2,800 members engaged in the creation, commercial development and orderly transfer of intellectual property rights; protection and management of intellectual capital; and intellectual capital management standards development. LES members are accountants, business leaders, business model innovators, consultants, dealmakers, economists, engineers, IP valuation experts, lawyers, licensing executives, lobbyists, merger and acquisition experts, public policy leaders, scientists, strategic planners, supply chain managers, tax specialists, and technology transfer specialists. These members represent innovation-centered enterprises of all sizes and kinds — such as government laboratories, professional services firms, universities, operating companies, regulatory authorities, licensing specialty firms and trade associations. LES is a member society of the Licensing Executives Society International, Inc. (LESI), which has 32 sister societies representing 7,500 members in 90 countries.



Hillary Brintle, LES Administrator


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