Monday 26 April 2010

Happy World IP Day!

Did you know that today is World Intellectual Property Day?

Unbelievably, April 26 every year is the World Intellectual Property Organisation’s (WIPO) World IP Day. WIPO? Well that will be a specialist agency of the United Nations of course.

Commercial legal specialist Amy Shakespeare says that the issue of IP has been considered so worthwhile it has been awarded its own day and if it leads to businesses in the region considering their own intellectual property we should put out the bunting and hand round the sandwiches.

Amy, a lawyer at Higgs & Sons, said: “Without the concept of IP, Coca-Cola would be unlikely to have one of the world’s most valuable global brands, Mr Dyson may not have been able to prevent his competitors from copying his bag-less vacuum, and authors and musicians such as J K Rowling and Madonna may have found themselves a lot worse off had their works been copied and reproduced freely throughout the world.”

Back in the real world, how can IP help protect you and your business? Initially, taking your IP seriously will show your competitors that you consider IP (and any infringement of it) to be an important issue that you are prepared to protect. IP protection can therefore be used as a deterrent against would-be infringers.

If this didn’t put all potential infringers off, by assessing, organising and protecting your IP in the appropriate ways, you should be able to act swiftly and successfully in preventing infringement and damage to your brand. On review, you may even discover that you have an IP asset that can be sold or licensed to third parties to generate income.

Amy said: “IP can be a hugely lucrative and cost efficient mechanism for not only protecting your business and brand but also for exploiting it!”

If, after the celebrations have calmed today, you consider that a closer look at your business' intellectual property is worthwhile, please contact Amy Shakespeare at Higgs & Sons for a discussion concerning what IP you already have, its value to you and how best to protect and exploit it.

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