European IPR Helpdesk Bulletin Issue (20)

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

Does your business have know-how, inventions or brands? Then you have intangible assets that can be brought to the market to create new revenues and increase profits.

This Bulletin issue is largely dedicated to IP Commercialisation comprising the different available mechanisms to realise economic values from Intellectual Property (IP).

Particular attention is given to licensing as the most common IP commercialisation tool presenting specificities depending on the Intellectual Property involved.

An insight on licensing and Standard Essential Patents (SEPs) is offered by an article of Mr Matteo Sabattini and Ms Alessandra Mosca from Sisvel.

Read our interviews to discover the point of view of European SMEs on IP management and commercialisation.

As always, the Bulletin reports information about past IPR events together with some fresh news on the Helpline service. In addition, it contains the usual patent quiz and a new IP commercialisation crossword.

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Call for tenders: Pilot project for essentiality checks of Standard Essential Patents

The European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) has published a call for tenders on "pilot project for essentiality checks of Standard Essential Patents (SEPs)".

The objective of this contract is to assess the feasibility of a system that ensures better essentiality scrutiny for SEPs. This includes both the technical feasibility, how better scrutiny possibly could be carried out and institutional feasibility, which institutions could possibly set-up and implement a system of better scrutiny.

Amongst other elements, the analysis should be based on a set of concrete tests of SEPs in order to:

(i) identify best practices on performing essentiality checks;

(ii) find out the best cost effective manner;

(iii) consider policy and legal implications for a scrutiny mechanism for SEPs; and

(iv) identify possible benefits and incentives for the players to pass such a scrutiny.

The maximum duration of the study will be 14 months after the last signature of the contract.

The deadline for submission of the tenders is 05 October 2018.

For more information about the tender, and to access to the related tender documents, please refer to the TED website here.



Call for application for membership for a group of experts on the licensing and valuation of standard essential patents (SEPs)

The European Commission has created the group of experts on licensing and valuation of standard essential patents (SEPs) as announced in its Communication of November 2017.

The Commission has now also opened the call for applications for members of the group.

Deadline to apply is 20 August 2018.

Find further information here.


The European IPR Helpdesk is looking for case studies: tell us about your IP success story

Would you like your IP success story to be known by thousands of people around Europe?

What about becoming a source of inspiration to SMEs, institutions and researchers?


Then, tell your story as one of the European IPR Helpdesk's case studies and we will spread your success all around Europe!

Case studies are part of the range of publications developed by the European IPR Helpdesk in order to increase awareness of IP. Case studies contain concrete examples on how SMEs, institutions or academics use IP to achieve business success.

The European IPR Helpdesk disseminates case studies free of charge to an audience of more than 13,000 people through its website and through its newsletters, with around 8,000 subscribers.

Check our library if you would like to find out more about our case studies and contact the European IPR Helpdesk's IP advisors, Alejandra Aluja ( and Paula Barnola (, if you would like your case study published by the European IPR Helpdesk.

We are looking forward to hearing about your success story!

Standardisation and patents: two new EC studies

The European Commission has published two studies on the interplay between standardisation and patents. The first study focuses on issues and solutions related to standard essential patents (SEPs) and the standardisation process. The second study provides statistical evidence on the importance of SEPs on key technologies in Europe. The results of the studies will be used to assess the interplay between standardisation and patents in the EU Single Market.

Further information is available here.



A new online platform on renewable energy innovation

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in co-operation with the EPO and the International Electrotechnical Commission have launched a new online platform giving access to the world's largest collection of global renewable energy standards and patent documents. Also known as INSPIRE, the International Standards and Patents in Renewable Energy platform is the first and most complete solution of its kind. Indeed, the patents section contains information on over two million patent documents relating to carbon mitigation technologies from PATSTAT - a patent statistics database and Espacenet - a public online patent search tool. The standards section enables users to search through a database of more than 400 internationally used standards and explains what standards are, how they can be used and why they are important.  

You can read more and access the INSPIRE platform here.


Advocate General’s opinion on standard-essential patent owners’ obligations

In a case (C-170/13) referred by the German Court to the Court of Justice of the European Union on standard-essential patent (SEP), the Advocate General Melchior Wathelet delivered his non-binding opinion to the Court suggesting that the owner of a standard-essential patent that seeks corrective measures or brings an prohibitory injunction without informing the alleged infringer about the infringing action in writing, giving reasons, and specifying the SEP concerned and the manner in which it has been infringed by the infringer, would be liable of abuse of a dominant position.

“The SEP-holder must, in any event, present to the alleged infringer a written offer of a licence on FRAND terms which contains all the terms normally included in a licence in the sector in question, in particular the precise amount of the royalty and the way in which that amount is calculated”, the Advocate General noted.

For more information and to read in full the Advocate General’s opinion, please click here.

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Patents and Standards: A modern framework for standardisation involving intellectual property rights

The European Commission has launched a new consultation on the interplay between standardisation and intellectual property rights (IPR) such as patents.

The purpose of the present consultation is to allow stakeholders interested in standardisation involving patents to bring to the Commission's attention their views on:

  • how the current framework governing standardisation involving patents performs and
  • how it should evolve to ensure that standardization remains efficient and adapted to the fast-changing economic and technological environment.

This consultation will be open until January 31st, 2015.

For further information, please click here.

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Report on ‘Standardisation in the Area of Innovation and Technological Development, Notably in the Field of Text and Data Mining’

Text and data mining (TDM) is an important technique for analysing and extracting new insights and knowledge from the exponentially increasing store of digital data (‘Big Data’). It is important to understand the extent to which the EU’s current legal framework encourages or obstructs this new form of research and to assess the scale of the economic issues at stake.

TDM represents a significant economic opportunity for Europe. At present, the use of TDM tools by researchers in Europe appears to be lower than in its main competitors. In the legal issues section a description is offered of the application of different intellectual property laws and the extent to which TDM in Europe is facilitated by any existing exceptions to either EU copyright or database law. The application of a copyright and database exception relating to teaching or scientific research is optional and has not been implemented at all in some Member States. This has contributed to uncertainty in the European scientific research community.

There is a serious risk that Europe’s relative competitive position as a research location for the exploitation of digital data will deteriorate further, if steps are not taken to address the issues discussed in this report prepared for the EC Directorate-General for Research and Innovation by a Group of Experts.

The full report is available here.

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A new study on patents and standards

Standardization and intellectual property rights are key contributors to industrial innovation and industrial competitiveness. On the one side, standards ensure rapid diffusion of technologies and interoperability between products. On the other side, patents provide incentives for research and development and facilitate knowledge transfer.

Many standards comprise innovative technologies that are protected by patents. Therefore, in 2013 DG Enterprise and Industry commissioned a fact-finding study on the issue of patents and standards. This fact-finding study analyses the rules and practices developed to ensure efficient licensing of standard-related patents. It also covers barriers to efficient licensing and ideas discussed among stakeholders for dealing with these barriers.

This study has now been published and should help the European Commission in its attempts to improve the European governance of licensing arrangements forstandard essential patents (SEPs). It can also be useful in the (on-going) work of standard setting organizations on their IPR policies and rules.

For further information, please click here.

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