Case Study: Mark Kroll
Mark Kroll is a prolific innovator. With more than 375 patents, Kroll is the current world leader in medical device patents and is also the No. 1 inventor in the state of Minnesota. Kroll says his inventions come from recognizing a need, whether its overcoming discomfort associated with implantable cardioverter defibrillators, keeping toddlers from falling down stairs, or locating nuisance cellphones in an aircraft.
“I guess my medical device patents are the most rewarding,” said Kroll. “But it can be frustrating sometimes, waiting 10 to 12 years for a device to get FDA approval and finally start making a difference in people’s lives.”
Throughout his career, Kroll has played the roles of inventor, the vice president of research at a medical device startup and top executive for a large medical device manufacturer. He first hired Patterson Thuente IP in 1993 while working on implantable cardioverter defibrillators for Angeion Corporation. He immediately recognized the law firm’s grasp of the technology and attention to client service.
“What do I get out of Patterson? Here’s what I get: I get a deep understanding of the medical device world … and I really mean that.”
Kroll recalls one example where the firm assisted him and a company in which he was involved in M&A negotiations with a major player in the health care industry. The deal couldn’t go through unless the buyer was satisfied that the company had a sound opinion of counsel that there was freedom to operate relative to the patents of others. Kroll turned to Patterson partner Brad Pedersen for analysis of the situation.
“The Patterson firm did what it takes to get the job done,” said Kroll. “The team took the whole file, processed it, worked nights and weekends to get the job done. They dissected the issues and turned what could have been a year-long process into 10 weeks. We got the deal turned around and completed. I can’t think of anyone else that could have done it. Frankly, I can’t think of anyone else who would have taken it on.”
377 PATENTS AND COUNTING
Mark Kroll has a passion for developing technologies that improve and save lives. It’s driven him to become the world’s leader in medical device patents. And when it comes to those patents, his intellectual property law firm is Patterson Thuente IP.