How do I find an investor to fund turning my idea into a patent?

QUESTION:

I have submitted a patent idea to a company, and they need $1,200 to do the patent search, design, and study group before looking for a buyer.  I have no money available, as I have just started a new job.  I would like to know if there any investors that would be willing to take a chance with me, or if you have any help for me to move forward.  Thank you very much.

ANSWER:

Naomi Kokubo

Naomi Kokubo

by Naomi Kokubo, Cofounder of Founders Space

This is a good question, and I’ll do my best to answer it.  First of all, your idea probably isn’t worth anything until you are granted the actual patent, and that takes years and usually costs thousands of dollars for the legal work (unless you can do it yourself).

Any company that is promising to sell your idea for $1,200 is probably a scam.  Very few individuals or corporations will buy an idea, provisional or pending patent, and if they do, it’s usually not for a lot of money. Most individuals and companies buy patents once they are granted.  That’s when they become valuable.

Before you spend $1,200 to have this company do the patent search, design, and study group, please do  your homework on them.  Check references.  Find out exactly how many patents they’ve sold, for what amount, and how the entire process works.  Also find out what additional money you’ll need to spend and what happens if your patent idea does not sell.

You can file a provisional patent on your own for less than $1,200, and this gives you a year to file an actual patent.  Again, I wouldn’t waste my money and time unless you’re prepared to go all the way, and that’s expensive.

On another note, it’s hard to find people who are willing to invest in patents.  Most investors are looking to invest in startups that have a much larger upside than an individual patent.  Unless you have a very unique discovery that will have a huge impact on a large industry, the chance of finding an investor or buyer for your idea is slim.

If you want help connecting with investors and getting feedback, I recommend coming to one of our Founders Roundtables.  We’ll connect you with other entrepreneurs, who are going through the same thing, as well as lawyers and investors, who can provide valuable advice.

I hope what I wrote above helps a little!

Comments & Advice:
  1. Joe Johnson says:

    I have a car safety features, that keep people pets, and makes drunk driving or reckless driving obsolete, I have a way to make snow shovels a thing of the past , I also have a recycling idea that will make it a household standard, I have s way to make counterfeiting of money impossible , and multiple apps, if your interested in investing in my companies,I have a new invention to make tattoos painless and extremely convenient for Tattoo artists across the world , emails are welcome at [email protected], a confidentiality agreement is ready to sign and video so of the first encounter will be expected to protect my intellectual property , please, thx 587-577-9117

  2. Alfred Ortiz says:

    I own my prototypes I’ve been in patent pending status twice. I’ve worked with two different invention companies have exhausted 18,000 dollars on the product.
    I feel that the product is a innovative way for consumers to show their sport teams. the product is smoke taillight covers which features the logo of the Seattle Seahawks, the product is made from Smoke poly carbonate.
    Do you have any leasds or suggesting I also have pictures.

  3. Hassan Hamid says:

    For patent an ldea top in world and all must use it for safty in drivering in fact is projact need to all car use it to work.esay for manufacturing. And low cost. I need partner. e:mail [email protected]. Phon. 00989168092529

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