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Computer Patent Annuities (CPA) is founded by UK patent attorneys, who had a vision to provide an intellectual property service specialising in patent renewals.
The scope of services was extended to include designs and trademark renewals.
CPA opened its first US office in New York City.
The US office relocated to Arlington, VA.
Search International began providing specialist global trademark searching services.
CPA acquired a majority share of Trade Marks Directory Service (TMDS). This meant we could now offer a worldwide trademark watching service, monitoring all types of marks including 3D, colours, sounds, smells and gestures - for some of the world's most famous brands.
The US headquarters was moved to Alexandria, VA, just steps away from the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). CPA also launched CPA Direct, allowing clients direct, secure, online access to their renewals portfolios 24 hours a day.
The launch of CPA Domarque provided clients with a service that allowed them to protect, manage and maintain their domain names online. This is now referred to as our domain and digital content service. CPA also acquired Paris based Memotech Interface Systeme enabling us to offer the Memotech IP management software, specifically designed for corporate IP departments. To keep pace with business demands, CPA opened new offices in London and Munich.
By taking a substantial stake in Maxim Technology Ltd, CPA was able to add Inprotech, an IP management system specifically designed for law firm IP departments, to our portfolio of software solutions. In 2002, our trademark searching service also went online, allowing clients to obtain instant quotes, initiate searches and track progress.
CPA completed the purchase of FoundationIP and secured a controlling stake in Intellevate. The companies, based in Minneapolis with offices in India, helped CPA expand our already wide range of software and outsourced IP support services.
CPA acquired a major stake in Lacasse and Associates LLC, considered to be one of the leading patent research firms in the US. This enabled CPA to further extend our portfolio of products and services, providing a greater range to our clients in the US and Europe.
CPA opened a new, state-of-the-art delivery centre in Noida, a business district on the eastern borders of India's capital New Delhi. CPA’s operations occupied four floors, covering 85,000 sq ft.
CPA acquired the patent research division of Germany's SVPG, specialising in pharmaceutical, chemical, biotech and life sciences. The acquisition strengthened the company's presence and client base in the German market and provided CPA with a solid platform for the further growth of our patent research business. CPA also entered into a strategic alliance with major electronic discovery software provider Applied Discovery Inc., a division of LexisNexis. The relationship ensured CPA clients would benefit from a total review and e-discovery solution and significantly enhanced the efficiency of servicing complex litigation cases.
CPA celebrated its 40th year of operations and rebranded as CPA Global, bringing group businesses around the world together under a single unifying name. The new brand served to underline our commitment to clients that the service they receive from CPA Global in any business, in any office, anywhere in the world is of the same high standard.
In June, CPA Global announced a landmark deal to supply legal services outsourcing to global mining company Rio Tinto – a deal that was heralded by The Times of London as 'ground-breaking' and which attracted worldwide media coverage as well as the keen attention of the legal profession and international business community.
Also in June, CPA Global opened an office in Hong Kong to spearhead our business development and further expansion in Asia. The office was to focus initially on China, Taiwan and other key markets in North and South East Asia.
On 29 January, CPA Global announced that Intermediate Capital Group ("ICG"), a leading independent investor and fund manager, had acquired a significant minority stake in the company, investing alongside the company's senior management team and the founding shareholders. Welcoming the new investment, CPA Global's Chief Executive Officer, Peter Sewell, said: "This is a very exciting time for CPA Global and everyone involved in the company. It represents the next stage in our evolution from an IP partnership handling patent renewals into a global leader in IP and legal services outsourcing. Our growth prospects in the years ahead are the strongest we've ever seen as we continue to develop our IP services and software businesses with an expanded range of products and services, while aggressively pursuing our diversification into the wider legal services sector."
As part of its Asian growth strategy, CPA Global established a direct presence in Korea with the opening of an office in Seoul in May. The company also expanded its local agent network to extend its reach in the market and offer Korean clients greater choice, both in how they work with CPA Global and the services that are available to them.
In September, CPA Global announced the acquisition of Ipendo, a leading international IP management software and service provider with a strong position in the Nordic region. In conjunction with the acquisition, CPA Global and Zacco Group, one of the leading IP consultancies in Europe, entered into a strategic alliance, whereby CPA Global will support Zacco Group with their patent renewals, while Zacco Group will offer to clients a wide range of IP management products and services from CPA Global.
On 26 March, leading European investment firm Cinven announced that it had completed the acquisition of CPA Global from our previous shareholders, including Intermediate Capital Group ("ICG") and the founder shareholders. In a statement first announcing the deal in January, Stuart McAlpine, Partner at Cinven, said the acquisition represents an "exciting opportunity" to invest in a global market leader, and fits well with "Cinven's strategy of investing in world-class European companies where it can help accelerate their global exposure". He added that Cinven are looking forward to working with the CPA Global management team to support the business in the next phase of our development.
Welcoming the acquisition, Peter Sewell, Chief Executive Officer of CPA Global, said: "As demand for IP management services and software from corporates and law firms increases globally, we are confident our business will continue to develop significantly. The growth opportunities in Asia are particularly exciting, where the market is showing a strong rise in patent applications and renewals. We look forward to working with Cinven to continue growing CPA Global's worldwide presence."
In October, CPA Global opened new regional headquarters in Munich and Hong Kong, covering Central Europe and Asia Pacific respectively. Both represented moves to new offices in more convenient, central locations with expanded client service capabilities.
CPA Global acquired First To File, a Silicon Valley-based developer of electronic document management systems (DMS), specifically tailored for the IP industry. The February acquisition enabled CPA Global to offer clients a proven, IP-specific, electronic DMS that can be delivered either as an independent service or tightly integrated with IP management software solutions from CPA Global and other providers.
Also in February, CPA Global opened its first office in Mainland China to help meet the rapidly increasing demand for professional IP management services in the country. Located in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, the new office provides a springboard for the Company’s further expansion in Mainland China.
In March, CPA Global opened a new office in Silicon Valley, California, to help meet the huge demand for IP management services in the region and enable the Company to better serve its West Coast clients. Located in Redwood City, the office joins a network of offices in the US that already includes Alexandria, Minneapolis and Houston.