Blockchain patents: Chinese companies in the fast lane
According to new reports, China’s Ant Group currently still has the most blockchain patents in the world.
Recently, Intellectual Asset Management (IAM) magazine published a report ranking the world’s top blockchain patent holders. According to the report, Chinese insurance and financial services company Ping An filed the most blockchain patents in 2020. With 1,215 patents filed, Ping An overtakes Bitcoin Future internet company Tencent, also based in China, and is now in second place in the ranking, behind Ant Group.
However, if Ping An remains true to its rapid patent trajectory this year, this could soon change. Compared to 2019, the company increased its patent growth by more than 400 per cent. At the same time, Ant Gruop’s patent filings fell from 880 to 586 during this period from 2019 to 2020, a 33 per cent drop.
IBM: Fewer blockchain patents – higher reach
The first three places in the patent rankings are all occupied by Chinese companies. In fourth place is the US IT and consulting company IBM. With 137 blockchain patents filed in 2020, IBM is far behind Chinese companies such as Tencent (585) or Ant Group (586). Despite this obvious inferiority in terms of new filings, IBM is mentioned more often in the industry than its Chinese competitors. In addition, IBM owns some of the oldest blockchain rights.
The report also shows that blockchain patent applications are falling every year. While 12,300 blockchain patents were filed in 2018, this number was only 11,299 the following year. In 2020, the number of applications fell again to 9,415. Whether 2021 will also fall into this pattern will be seen at the end of the year.