05.30.18

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Märpel Looks at Benoît Battistelli’s Toxic Financial Affairs at the EPO

Posted in Europe, Finance, Patents at 11:55 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Recent: Benoît Battistelli the Latest Example of Massive Bonuses Given to People Who Destroyed Their Own Organisation

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Summary: More and more people/circles raise serious questions about Battistelli’s financial dealings at the EPO

THE scandals at the EPO are greater in number and magnitude than it may seem. Some of them may take years to come to the surface. The USPTO, by contrast, has barely any scandals (we covered one yesterday, but those are rare).

Recently, the ‘gambling’ with EPO funds was brought up again (it happened around Christmas time when almost nobody paid attention). Märpel has just published this long post about it:

Now President Battistelli has decided he needed a blank check to play with that money on the stock and derivatives market. Apparently he did not learn about the toxic loans of Saint-Germain. Or maybe he knows them too well, Märpel cannot say. Usually money lost in risky investments is not lost for everybody.

The Council, in its rubber-stamping majesty, decided to approve the new investment guidelines last December. Lately the budget and finances committee cleared the small details. Interested readers having access to the EPO intranet may look for document CA/F 10/18.

Märpel finds difficult to believe what that document says. Apparently, the EPO is going to set aside “around 250 millions Euros” every year in the next 20 years and expects that the total treasury will reach EUR 12 billions Euros after a period of 20 years, which is lots of money even for cats. The expected long term return on the modelled portfolio is 4,0% and the annual risk is 15,1% of the Net Assets Value, which Märpel understands to mean that the EPO will invest in relatively high risk assets to get that level of return. Märpel’s compound interests calculator also notes that the figures do not match, even if the EPO would invest its complete cash reserve in that risky scheme (2.3 billions Euros) Märpel is short of some money. Märpel also notes that up to 75% can be invested in risk investments (equities, commodities, real estate and “alternatives”), which probably explains the 4% annual return in times when one is lucky to get 0.5%.

Nobody knows what the EPO is going to do with 12 billions Euros in 20 years. If the scheme succeeds (and that is a big “if”), the next-next-next-next President is going to have lots of money to play with. Or will he?

This subject was not too long ago tackled in a series of posts by Thorsten Bausch and recently by us as well. Bausch has just published this post about the Federal Court of Justice of Germany (not to be mistaken for FCC). He said:

The FCJ ordered that the petitioner must be granted access to the entire file wrapper. The objections raised by the plaintiff with regard to parts of the file which allow conclusions to be drawn on infringement proceedings conducted in parallel or which contain information on the designs challenged there were unfounded.

Bausch comes from a different world than yours truly because he works for a law firm, but judging by recent interactions he remains concerned about the financial dealings at the EPO. We’re now just one week away from the massive passage of EPO’s budget (i.e. stakeholders’ money) to Battistelli’s other employer in Saint-Germain. It remains to be seen what happens to all that money and whether Battistelli will be held belatedly accountable after his diplomatic immunity is voided (António Campinos had already enjoyed it under EU-IPO).

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