Quants find new ways to identify inventive companies

Novel uses of patent and other data could help tell trailblazers from phonies

Wirecard’s executives presented the German payments processor as a technological pioneer. Yet the since-disgraced company held just one patent when it filed for insolvency last June.

US rival PayPal, which operates in broadly the same space, has more than 500 patents, according to data from Quant IP, a firm that produces innovation scores for companies. Several Wirecard executives are now being investigated for fraud and stockholders have been wiped out.

The potential gains from identifying

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