What Is IP Lifecycle Management?

IP lifecycle management is a process that follows intellectual property (IP) from the acquisition/development phase, through qualification, distribution, and integration into design.

Managing the complete IP lifecycle is critical in semiconductor development. Without IP lifecycle management, you’ll lack traceability and slow down development times. That’s why it’s important to effectively manage each stage of the IP lifecycle:

Image Methodics IP Lifecycle Management

What You Need in an IP Lifecycle Management Solution

To successfully manage the IP lifecycle, ensure traceability, and accelerate time-to-market, you need the right solution.

You need to be able to track IPs and their projects from conception through implementation. End-to-end traceability of those IPs is a requirement in the enterprise, especially for those with functional safety requirements.

Here are some of the basic functionalities to look for:

Usage Tracking
Workspace Tracking
Bill of Materials (BoM)
Release Management
IP Versions
Integration to Third Party Data
Issue & Defect Tracking
Design Files
System Metadata
Parent/Child Relationships

How Perforce Improves IP Lifecycle Management

Perforce improves IP lifecycle management with Helix IPLM (formerly Methodics IPLM) — a unique, comprehensive platform offering end-to-end traceability. Here’s how our solution supports each phase of the IP lifecycle.



IP is created in the acquisition phase. The IP can be bought from a third party IP vendor. It could be reused from an existing IP inside the corporation. Or it could be designed from new as part of a project.

Helix IPLM supports all forms of IP creation by enabling you to:

  • Bring in IP from a third party through integrations on the command line.
  • Easily reuse an existing IP you’ve already created by providing a web-based IP catalog.
  • Accelerate new IP design with a mixed-signal design client integrated into the Cadence and Synopsys analog design environments.
IP Lifecycle Management Acquisition


Requirements, defects, quality, performance, and other defining information is attached to the IP in the qualification stage — and measured as the IP matures through project releases.

In Helix IPLM, these releases are represented by IP version objects. These objects include a rollup of design data and metadata gathered from the design tools in the environment. So, requirements, defects, quality, and performance information are attached to the IP, ensuring the object is qualified.

You can also use custom reports and dashboards in Helix IPLM to interpret and measure the state of IP at each release.

IP Lifecycle Management Qualification


After the IP is qualified, it needs to be distributed to various team members.

In Helix IPLM, this is done using the workspace management features. Because Helix IPLM is deeply integrated with Helix Core (and other data management tools), it’s easy to keep everyone on the project up-to-date on the latest IP.

Making the IP available across multiple sites is critical. So is tracking the contents of user workspaces to maintain the health and consistency of the project environment. With Helix IPLM, you can fulfill these distribution needs automatically.

IP Lifecycle Management Distribution


The final stage of the IP lifecycle is to integrate the qualified IP version into the project bill of materials (BoM).

Helix IPLM integrates the IP into the BoM by using hierarchical dependencies to manage the versioned dependency tree. You can define these hierarchical BoMs via the PiWeb GUI or on the command line. These can also be self-managed during Continuous Integration (CI), adding automation to your process. Plus, you can use event tracking in Helix IPLM to determine when a qualified IP release is available.

IP Lifecycle Management Integration

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