SMEs

Raise awareness on IP in the biotech sector

“Biotechnology in Europe: The Tax, Finance and Regulatory Framework and Global Policy Comparison” is a joint report by Ernst & Young and EuropaBio. The reports examines what the continent has to offer to investors, entrepreneurs and researchers alike. It analyses everything from what to be taken into account when importing materials for clinical trials to the best way to exploit intellectual property within Europe’s various jurisdictions, as well as the key global locations on the increasingly important topic of R&D incentives.

Because jurisdictions influence how, when and why investors in biotechnology decide to enter or exit a business, the report weighs up the advantages and disadvantages of individual countries.

In the event that you are interested in why IP is important for biotech companies, we encourage you to read the two documents below!

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European IPR Helpdesk templates on NDAs and MoUs updated

We are pleased to inform you that the European IPR Helpdesk has updated its Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs)  that can now be used independently of the kind of negotiations that you enter into, both in the context of EU-funded projects and for international partnerships.

In addition to that, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for Horizon 2020 has been created. Alongside the one already available for FP7, the new document reflects the few changes brought by the new Horizon 2020 rules.

All these templates can be found and freely downloaded in the European IPR Helpdesk online library, under useful documents.

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IP Marketplace

IP Marketplace is managed by the Danish Patent and Trademark Office and is an online display window where you can look for trading partners and other kinds of partnership. IP Marketplace is free of charge for both buyers and sellers.

At IP Marketplace you can put your patents, patent applications, utility models, design and trade marks - so-called IP rights - up for sale or out-licensing. You can also use IP Marketplace when searching for IP rights to buy or in-license, or when you are looking for partners for innovation projects that build on patentable knowledge.

You can access IP Marketplace here.

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WIPO’s guide on secrets of IP for small and medium-sized exporters is now available also in Turkish

Some years ago the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) published  a guide on Intellectual Property for small and medium-sized exporters. This guide was available in English, French and Spanish, as you can see here.

Given the relevance of this practical guide, the Istanbul Chamber of Industry (ICI), with the support of WIPO, has translated and customised it to Turkish. To read it, click here.

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European IPR Helpdesk Bulletin issue (12)

We are pleased to inform you that a new issue of the European IPR Helpdesk Bulletin has been released and is now available on-line.

This Bulletin issue is the first of a series of four to be published this year and will carry on with the same focus as before, tackling concrete aspects of the management and exploitation of intangibles, whether they belong to the assets of research organisations or small businesses.

The beginning of this year has seen the start of Horizon 2020, the new EU research framework programme that will be running for the next seven years. The underlying policy, in accordance with the Europe 2020 flagship initiatives, is about helping organisations to perform better in research, innovation and competitiveness, so as to contribute to wider social objectives such as growth, employment and sustainability. Indeed, the key word for the forthcoming years will be innovation.

The European IPR Helpdesk is enthusiastic about actively participating in the shaping of an innovation-friendly Europe, which will prove fundamental to staying competitive and keeping its place in a fast changing world. It will do so by increasing awareness of the importance of innovating for SMEs and research organisations, and, consequently, of properly managing intangible assets for their optimal valorisation. Undoubtedly, intellectual property is seen as a driving engine for the economic success of Europe in a competitive global economy where knowledge and its use is increasingly the single most important determinant of business success.

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Commercialising Intellectual Property: Franchising

This fact sheet, as a part of the series on “Commercialising IP”, deals with franchising. According to the statistics of the European Franchise Federation, in 2009 the EU-17 Member States had more than 10,000 franchise brands, 10.8% of which represented the share of employment among small and medium sized-enterprises (SMEs). Franchising has been increasingly used by European companies and individuals as a route for exploitation of intangibles and expansion of their business to other territories and countries. This fact sheet will therefore help you understand what franchising is and particularly why it is an attractive business option, whether you are a potential Franchisor or Franchisee. Moreover, you will find in this document information on the legal environment in Europe and a checklist of the main steps to take when establishing a franchising partnership.

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D.A Glass: IP opportunity with the support of the Enterprise Europe Network

This case study tells how an SME can succeed in filing patent applications with the support of the Enterprise Europe Network. Having proper competences and cooperating closely with international network partners, EEN representatives assist in developing the potential and innovative capacity of SMEs. EEN partners facilitate direct contact with university experts and patent agents. Such contacts are helpful in the development of new products which are the subject of patent applications filed by network clients.

Additionally, consulting services related with intellectual property rights, provided by Enterprise Europe Network representatives, contribute to raising awareness of patent protection, trade marks and copyrights. In this particular case, the support in the procedures related with ensuring patent protection for newly developed technological solutions was invaluable for the company, especially in formal and legal aspects.

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IP assets for financial advantages

Besides the research activity, the costs of developing a new technology into a product and then marketing it are generally very high. Moreover, it is common for many small businesses to have little money to commercialise their innovations, for which they usually seek support from national financial schemes.

This fact sheet gives an overview of the different means at the disposal of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and research organisations (ROs) to access finance, in order to obtain liquidity from their intangible. The aim is to show that IP can be used as leverage for attracting investors, as collateral for obtaining credit and loans as well as receivables for securitisations. All of this can derive from banks, equity investors and the public sector.

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Horizon 2020 research programme approved by the European Parliament

Horizon 2020 was approved by MEPs on Thursday, November 21. Parliament amended it to improve support for small firms, attract more people into science and more scientists to join the programme, and earmark funding for non-fossil energy research.

Several amendments also concern the European Commission proposal for laying down the rules for participation and dissemination in Horizon 2020, having the aim to simplify the granting procedure and better exploit the research results.

The agreed budget for 2014-2020 is €70.2 billion (at 2011 prices). The biggest headings are "Societal challenges" (39% of the total budget), "Excellent science" (32%) and "Industrial leadership"(22%).

After Parliament's vote, the programme needs to be formally adopted by EU member states too, in the coming weeks. The programme starts on 1 January 2014.

To read the press release, please click here. To access the agreed rules for participation and dissemination and other background notes, here.

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