Technology

These Were the Companies with the Most Patents in 2021

By Aman Jain

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, a record number of patents were filed last year, with several Asian countries, including China, dominating the list. The UN’s World Intellectual Property Organization, in its annual overview, noted that 277,500 international patents were filed last year, an increase of 0.9% from 2020. The year 2021 was the 12th consecutive year of growth in international patent filings. Let’s take a look at the top ten companies with the most patents in 2021.

Top Ten Companies With The Most Patents In 2021

We have used the data from the IFI Claims Patent Service to rank the top ten companies with the most patents in 2021. Following are the top ten companies with the most patents in 2021.

Qualcomm (2,149)

Founded in 1985 and headquartered in San Diego, this company deals in digital telecommunications products and services. Qualcomm received 6% fewer patents in 2021 than what it got in 2020. Qualcomm reported revenue of more than $33 billion in 2021, compared to over $23 billion in 2020. Its shares are down about 8% YTD and over 10% in the last month.

Microsoft (2,418)

Founded in 1975 and headquartered in Redmond, Wash., this company deals in software, services, devices, and solutions. Microsoft received 17% fewer patents in 2021 than it received in 2020. It was ranked fourth in terms of the number of patents in 2020. Microsoft reported revenue of more than $168 billion in 2021, compared to over $143 billion in 2020. Its shares are down almost 7% YTD but are up by about 3.7% in the last month.

LG Electronics (2,487)

Founded in 1947 and headquartered in Seoul, South Korea, this company deals in consumer electronics devices. LG received 12% fewer patents in 2021 and was ranked seventh in 2020.

Apple (2,541)

Founded in 1976 and headquartered in Cupertino, Calif., this company deals in smartphones, wearables, computers, as well as offers related services. Apple moved up one place in 2021 despite getting 9% fewer patents. The company got 12% more patents in 2020 than what it received in 2019. Apple shares are down about 1.5% YTD but up nearly 6% in the last month.

Intel (2,615)

Founded in 1968 and headquartered in Santa Clara, Calif., this company deals in computer products and technologies. Intel received 9% fewer patents in 2021 than it received in 2020. The chipmaker was ranked fourth in 2017 and 2018 but dropped to fifth place in 2019 and 2020. Intel shares are down by about 3% YTD but are up by 3.9% in the last month.

Huawei (2,770)

Founded in 1987 and headquartered in Shenzhen, China, this company designs, makes and sells telecommunications equipment, consumer electronics and smart devices. Huawei received 10% more patents in 2021 than it did in 2020. It was ranked ninth in terms of the number of patents in 2020. The company has been investing more than 10% of its sales revenue back into R&D, and its R&D team constitutes more than half of its total workforce.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing (2,798)

Founded in 1987 and headquartered in Hsinchu, Taiwan, this company makes and sells integrated circuits and wafer semiconductor devices. Even in 2020, when most companies witnessed a drop in patents, Taiwan Semiconductor reported a 22% increase and moved from the 12th spot in 2019 to sixth in 2020. TSMC usually invests about 8%-9% of the revenue in R&D. Its shares (ADR) are down by about 13% YTD and 5.9% in the last month.

Canon (3,021)

Founded in 1937 and headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, this company develops, makes and sells copying machines, office multifunction devices, cameras, printers and more. The Japanese company has been among the top five in the number of patents granted for 36 consecutive years. With 40,706 active patent families, Canon ranks ninth in terms of cumulative patent holdings globally. Canon allocates about 8-9% of its net sales to R&D expenses.

Samsung (6,366)

Founded in 1969 and headquartered in Suwon, South Korea, it is a multinational electronics corporation. Samsung received 1% fewer patents in 2021 than in 2020. With 90,416 active patent families, Samsung ranks first in terms of cumulative patent holdings globally. It is the largest non-U.S. spender on R&D. During FY2020, the South Korean company spent about 8.9% of its sales on R&D.

IBM (8,682)

Founded in 1911 and headquartered in Armonk, N.Y., this company offers integrated solutions using information technology and knowledge of business processes. IBM received 5% fewer patents in 2021 than in 2020. With 41,937 active patent families, IBM ranks eighth in terms of cumulative patent holdings globally. The company has received more than 150,000 U.S. patents since 1920. Its shares are down about 1.6% YTD but are up 4.7% in the last month.

Originally published at ValueWalk

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