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Andy Elder in his Intellectual Ventures office in 2012. (GeekWire Photo)

Intellectual Ventures’ top licensing executive, Andy Elder, has resigned his post for personal reasons and will depart at the end of the month, the company said today.

Cory Van Arsdale and Leslie Canning (LinkedIn photos)

It’s a major departure for Intellectual Ventures, which relies heavily on licensing revenue. Elder has been the company’s dealmaker-in-chief, leading the team that licenses Intellectual Ventures’ large portfolio of patents to other companies.

The past several months have been rough for Intellectual Ventures, which was founded by former Microsoft CTO Nathan Myhrvold. The company laid off 5 percent of its workforce in February, and it has struggled to gain funding for its latest round of investment from companies that have participated in previous rounds.

Nathan Myhrvold
Nathan Myhrvold

“Andy has made many valuable contributions during his time at Intellectual Ventures and he will be missed. I want to thank Andy for his leadership and wish him every success in the future,” IV President and Chief Operating Officer Adriane Brown said in a news release announcing Elder’s departure.

Before joining IV in 2011, Elder was Cisco Systems’ Vice President of Worldwide Sales for Sports and Entertainment Solutions. His deputies Leslie Canning and Cory Van Arsdale will take joint responsibility for Elder’s work at the intellectual property company, and will report directly to Brown.

Last week, a report surfaced saying that Microsoft and Sony have both chipped in to the company’s $3 billion round, while previous investors Apple, Intel and Google have all chosen to stay away.

“We joined Intellectual Ventures’ first fund as a way to defend ourselves against unjustified patent claims,” Google spokesman Matt Kallman told Reuters in October. “Once we came to understand IV’s operating model, we didn’t join its later funds.”

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