Projects

Sharing a Product Idea: Is it Worth the Cost?

Minnette Bumpus, Bowie State University
Garthen Leslie, Independent IT Consultant

Dominique Turner, University of Maryland University College

Learning Outcomes

In completing this case assignment, students should be able to:

  1. Distinguish between different types of product innovations

  2. Analyze the value and monetization of intellectual property

  3. Appraise the fairness of royalty arrangements 

 

Application

The case is most appropriate for undergraduate level and graduate level courses in entrepreneurship and new ventures.

Key Words

innovation, intellectual property, royalties, ideas, crowdsourcing, patents

Contact

Minnette A. Bumpus, Department of Management, Marketing & Public Administration, College of Business, Bowie State University, 14000 Jericho Park Road, Bowie, MD 20715. Email mbumpus@bowiestate.edu. Phone 301-860-3640.

Journal of Case Studies November 2017, Vol. 35, No. 2, p. 20

www.sfcrjcs.org

ISSN 2162-3171

Abstract

Sharing a Product Idea: Is it Worth the Cost?


Garthen Leslie, Independent IT Consultant Dominique Turner, University of Maryland University College

On April 25, 2014, Garthen Leslie and Ben Kaufman, Quirky founder and CEO, appeared on the Bloomberg television show, In the Loop, hosted by Betty Liu, to discuss how they had teamed up to move Garthen’s idea to an actual product. Garthen had invented a smartphone application that could control and monitor the operation of a window air conditioner. This invention evolved into the Aros smart air conditioner, a Quirky and GE cobranded product. It had been a little over a year since that appearance; yet a few of Garthen’s close friends and family members still enjoyed kidding him about his “deer in the headlights” reaction to Betty’s question regarding whether or not his share of potential earnings from his invention was enough. As he reminisced about the Aros’ evolution, Garthen wondered if his answer to Betty’s question would be the same if it were asked today.

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