Ant Group Leads China-Dominated 2020 List of Blockchain Patent Holders

The only non-Chinese firm in the rankings, IBM, came fourth in terms of number of patents.

Mar 15, 2021 at 1:36 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 12:26 p.m. UTC

Jack Ma's Ant Group leads the way in blockchain patents, according to Clarivate's Derwent World Patents Index (DWPI), a ranking dominated by Chinese companies.

  • The Alibaba affiliate retained its spot at the top of the index, which aggregates patents filed for both quantity and quality, according to research by International Asset Management (IAM) published Friday using the DWPI data.
  • Ant Group has 2,298 blockchain patents, having added 586 in 2020, a 33% decline from the 880 filed the year before.
  • A mammoth 1,215 filed in 2020 by Ping An Group saw the Shenzhen-based conglomerate pip Tencent into second place.
  • The DWPI scores patents based on various metrics such as technical breadth, geographical coverage and average annual citations to build an "average strength index" of companies' patents.
  • These score metrics push IBM, the only non-Chinese company in the top 10, into second place behind Ant Group. IBM came fourth in terms of number of blockchain patents with 647 filings.
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