When developing an IP strategy, you should consider each type of intellectual property (IP) protection: copyright, trademark, and patent. Each offers different protection and rights as well as different benefits, applications, and risks.
It is not uncommon for early stage and scaling startups to be asked by investors if the innovation forming the basis of the product/service they are taking to market is patented. Strong IP protection guards against infringement and a strong Patent Strategy guides the development and growth of a Patent Portfolio, which can lead to increased corporate value through higher valuations.
A successful Patent Strategy should take into account the following:
- Provisional Patent Application(s)
- Non-Provisional Patent Application(s)
- Family/Child Patent(s)
- Granted Patents
- International IP protection
- IP Ownership maintenance
- Patent infringement monitoring
“As we embark on the next wave of technological and industrial revolutions, we must ensure that we continue to have a robust IP system, with rights that are reliable, predictable, and meaningfully enforceable. This is, in fact, more important now than ever.”
– DIRECTOR ANDREI IANCU
Speech at the European Patent Office Patent Information Conference
Developing a Strong Patent Portfolio
Robust patent protection is more than simply filing for patents and having them granted. With some forethought, patent applications may be filed in order to link inventive ideas where each patent forms a portion of a “fence” of protection. Developing a strategic view of innovations permits the development and expansion of the “fence” of protection, thus further protecting a company’s freedom to operate in their market space.
However, simply having one or more patents in a portfolio does not necessarily provide the greatest value for an innovator or company. An analysis of a patent portfolio can discover additional monetization possibilities as well as identify additional areas of innovation that could be protected.