ipan and Delegate

ipan and Delegate are leading fast-growing intellectual property management services and software companies.

Business overview

ipan Group, headquartered in Munich, is a rapidly-growing provider of intellectual property management services and software. With offices throughout Europe and the US, and long-standing partnerships with 100+ leading IP law firms, it offers highly transparent, efficient and flexible patent annuity, trademark renewal and European Patent (EP) validation services, as well as extended services such as IP recordals. ipan Group’s software offering comprises the leading intellectual property management software solutions Unycom, IPfolio (minority stake) and IPSS, which enable both corporate IP departments and IP law firms to efficiently manage their IP portfolios along the entire lifecycle. Through the recent launch of ip-x-change, ipan Group has created an open platform connecting services and software to offer a single point of contact for all IP services to its 450+ clients. ipan was founded in 2004 by Anton Bory.

Delegate is a fast-growing legal process outsourcing service provider with a very strong capability and reputation in services for EP validations and foreign filings, and a growing presence in IP renewals services and IP recordals. It was formed in 2015 through the merger of valipat, the Brussels-based leading provider of EP validation and filing services, and Envoy, the Glasgow-based fast-growing IP renewals services provider. With offices in Europe and the U.S., it serves 700+ IP law firms and corporate IP departments with in-house attorneys through an agent network of 170+ leading law firms, covering all jurisdictions of the worldwide IP markets. The company is led by CEO Patrice Durand, who has been involved in valipat since its foundation as part of IP law firm Gevers Group and subsequent spin-off.

Investment highlights

  • Continued market growth driven by both new patent applications and further increase in outsourcing share
  • Recession-resilient business: Patent and trademark filings and renewals in 200+ legislations are a business-critical process in most industries and have proven to be quite resilient through the economic cycle.
  • Based on the strong positioning of each player in their respective market segments, both Delegate and ipan seem well-positioned to continue their historic growth trajectory and win additional market shares
  • Opportunity to create a market-leading combination with further roll-up potential

Value creation strategy

  • Organic growth: Support of the management team in growing their teams to further expand globally
  • Building an end-to-end IP software and services provider: Strategic support in expanding into new service areas and geographic regions
  • Growth through acquisitions: Strengthening existing services and software through further acquisitions as well as expanding the value chain by entering IP services/software currently not offered by the group
  • Corporate structure: Several independent companies will be brought together and a joint group structure will be created

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ipan and Delegate


Munich (Germany)
Brussels (Belgium)



Acquisition date:

June 2018

CEOs and CFOs:

Patrice Durand
Régis de Boisé
Christoph Mann


Mark Nieuwendijk