Private Equity Funds Buying Into Patent Portfolios/Lawsuits

IP litigation–especially patent litigation–is hot, but I’ve been trying to figure out what’s causing the growth and whether it’s persistent. Jessie Seyfer at the Recorder provides one explanation for the discontinuous bump-up in patent litigation: private equity funds, tired of poor returns elsewhere, are channeling their investment dollars into a new asset class of patent portfolios and buying into patent lawsuits, thus providing a vast pool of new money flowing into plaintiff-side patent work that will generate lots of legal fees for both sides. Accordingly, it seems to me that patent litigation will stay hot for quite some time as the legal industry resets to a new and higher equilibrium of patent lawsuits.