Facebook Inc. (FB) acquired 750 patents from International Business Machines Corp. (IBM), adding intellectual property that may help it counter allegations of patent infringement, a person with knowledge of the transaction said.
The patents cover various technologies such as software and networking, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the deal hasn’t been made public. The acquisition would swell the size of Facebook’s portfolio, which includes at least 56 issued patents and 503 filed U.S. patent applications.
My initial reaction to this story was, oh IBM you silly has-been, why are you selling your IP. But then I realized, IBM hasn't really been strongly in the market of *making* or *doing* things for quite a while. They've turned from a big blue hardware company into an innovation and research company.
Patents are their product, and their customers are big co's who want to do interesting things without being sued. Good deal for both parties.