Inventor Spotlights

Lev Bolotin

Founder & President/CEO, ClevX™
Kirkland, Washington

Prolific Inventor Sees Market Opportunity for IP-Based Startup

ClevX, short for clever eXtensions, is a small startup that develops IP-based working prototypes to provide companies with innovative breakthroughs ahead of the competition. One of its top inventions is the DATALOCK®, a self-contained on-board mechanism for user authentication and encryption. Essentially, it’s the technology to lock down data contained within a USB flash drive.

ClevX founder Lev Bolotin left Moscow for the United States with a Ph.D. in robotics and $36 in his pockets to seek better opportunities for his young family. For Bolotin, success came as a result of his inventive nature and insight about the possibilities of a vibrant economy for intellectual property. A prolific inventor, Bolotin is named on nearly 40 U.S. patents and 70 international patents, contributing to breakthroughs in robotics, automated programming, portable memory and mobile devices. In 2005, he founded ClevX after observing a gradual shift in the IP market as more U.S. companies began to value their IP as strategic assets with tangible value.

Intellectual Ventures Finds Value in Market-Proven Assets

Bolotin was well aware of Intellectual Ventures’ role in proving the market for intellectual property. As he continued to build his company, he held Intellectual Ventures in the back of his mind as a potential buyer for his patents. “Intellectual Ventures taught businesses to treat IP as a tangible asset,” says Bolotin. “They opened the door, and now people can see new horizons through it.”

A few years after founding ClevX, a company that Bolotin had consulted for approached him to help monetize its patent portfolio, including some of his own inventions, while preserving access to the IP for its own needs. Bolotin believed Intellectual Ventures would see value in these market-proven assets, and he was right.

Patent Monetization Benefits Companies of All Sizes

ClevX acted as the intermediary between Intellectual Ventures and the company seeking to monetize its portfolio, and ClevX’s share of the deal enabled the startup to continue building a significant IP portfolio of its own, including secure storage innovations adopted by consumer product manufacturers. With one deal, two innovative companies realized cash to finance their next discoveries and Intellectual Ventures added strong IP to its portfolio. “Intellectual Ventures proved to the business community that IP can be trusted as an asset,” Bolotin says. “It can be bought and sold. IV has established a value reference for IP—and that is priceless!”

Lev Bolotin
"IV proved to the business community that IP can be trusted as an asset. IV has established a value reference for IP—and that is priceless!"

Get Printable Inventor Spotlight »