How to develop an IP strategy
Good ideas can be worth pure gold, which is why successful products are often copied. It is therefore all the more important to integrate how you handle your intellectual property into your company’s strategy.
At the IPI, you can apply to register technical inventions (patents), product names (trade marks), or the shape of an object (design) for protection. Artistic works and software (copyright) are automatically protected from the moment of their creation so there is no requirement for registration.
Protect your patents and designs frst as they have priority. A trade mark can be protected at a later stage.
Patents, trade marks and designs are only protected in countries where they are registered (except for copyright). So think carefully about where you want to register your intellectual property. A good indication is where your current key market is.
With trade mark searches and assisted patent searches, you can avoid investing time in an invention that is no longer new. Carrying out a search also prevents you from infringing third party IP rights.
Define who is responsible for managing intellectual property in the company. This also includes analyzing which IP rights are needed, applying to register them, concluding contracts and enforcing rights.
Include an intellectual property clause in contracts with employees and third parties.
Ensure that confidential information is protected internally. Distribute sensitive technological know-how among several employees so that you can limit the cluster risk if someone leaves to work for a competitor.