Intellectual property management at trade fairs

Trade fairs and exhibitions are very important marketing tools for companies, in particular for SMEs. They help to attract new customers, test products, access new markets, raise the image, profile and popularity of a company or product, and enhance competitiveness.

While, trade fairs can facilitate intellectual property (IP) infringements, they can also help IP owners detect such infringements. Therefore, exhibitors must be aware of all the IP issues that can arise in the context of trade fairs and take appropriate measures before, during and after the show.

Learn all about it in this fact sheet. 

The European IPR Helpdesk has also published a leaflet on "IP management at trade fairs", downloadable here.

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IP considerations for trade fair organisers

Tackling intellectual property (IP) issues in trade fairs and exhibitions is not only a crucial element for exhibitors. It is also highly important for organisers as the risk of IP infringement in a trade fair/exhibition may affect the credibility of the trade show and might discourage companies from participating in these events. Being aware of this, many organisers are now taking initiatives to ease the fight against IP infringements.

This fact sheet offers some possible measures that can be taken by the trade fair organisers to prevent the infringement of IP rights during trade fairs, and introduces real examples from a number of trade fair organisers and associations.

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European IPR Helpdesk Bulletin Issue (25)

We are pleased to inform you that Issue 25 of the European IPR Helpdesk Bulletin has been published and is now available online.

This Bulletin issue is largely dedicated to copyright and its importance for businesses.

An article from the European IPR Helpdesk explains the general framework of international copyright protection and a contribution from Mario Cistaro PhD, an intellectual property lawyer based in Rome, provides a general view of the copyright legal framework at the European Union level. 

The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) provides an article summarising the conclusions of the 15 Frequently Asked Questions from consumers on copyright in a digital context formulated by the European Observatory on Infringements of Intellectual Property.

In an interview with Marius Røe Nåvik, a professional violinist from Norway, we discuss some copyright issues often faced by performers.

As per usual, the Bulletin reports information about past IPR events together with the latest news from the Helpline service. In addition, you will find the usual patent quiz and our brand new copyright true or false quiz.

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EUIPO report: An average company spends 115k EUR annually on IP enforcement

 
The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), acting through the European Observatory on Infringements of Intellectual Property Rights has published a report on "private costs of enforcement of IPR", analysing the impact of counterfeiting and piracy by quantifying the costs borne by companies in dealing with IP infringement. 
 
The study is based on a survey of 1,291 companies in 14 EU Member States, which provided a detailed picture of the resources used to detect and combat infringements by both small and large companies. 
 
According to the findings of the study, an average company spends 115,317 EUR per year on enforcement-related activities. Not surprisingly, this amount varies depending on the size of the companies. The report reveals that while for the small companies (having fewer than 50 employees), the average expenditure on IP enforcement is 83,653 EUR per year, for medium-sized companies (with 50-250 employees), the outlay increases to 103,166 EUR. Finally, in the case of large companies, those with more than 250 employees, the IP enforcement costs amount to 159,132 EUR per year. 
 
To read the whole report, please click here.
 

EUIPO named as the world’s most innovative IP Office

As a result of the global survey carried out by the Trademark Review magazine, the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) has been ranked as the most innovative IP office in the world among the 40 top IP offices.

The survey results show that the French (INPI) and Singaporean IP Offices (IPOS) share the first runner-up position, while the South Korean IP Office (KIPO) follows them. Finally, the UK IP Office (UKIPO) and the US IP Office (USPTO) complete the top-5 tier.

Please click here to access to the whole story. 

 

Inspiring IP case studies from the United Kingdom

The UK Intellectual Property Office has published three case studies in its blog, revealing how IP plays a crucial role in the daily life of some of the UK's islands.

These inspirational short IP stories cover:

  • Harris Tweed, Britain’s oldest certification mark;  
  • Jersey Royal potatoes, renowned with their unique flavour, which are protected through a Certification Trade Mark and as an EU Protected Designation of Origin;
  • Tristan da Cunha lobster, an exclusive brand for fine dining.

Read the full stories here.

 

EUIPO report on the economic cost of IPR infringement in the smartphones industry

The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), through the European Observatory on Infringements of Intellectual Property Rights, published today the latest sectoral study on the economic impact of IPR infringement in the marketplace. This 11th study is dedicated to findings on the smartphones sector.

The report analysed the number of smartphones sold in 90 countries in every region in the world, based on point-of-sale tracking of consumer purchases. According to the report, it is estimated that 184 million fewer smartphones were sold by the legitimate industry in 2015, due to the presence of counterfeit devices in the marketplace.

The report also estimates that 12.9% of legitimate sales of smartphones were lost in 2015 due to the presence of fake products in the worldwide market – equivalent to EUR 45.3 billion.

Please click here for the full report.

EUIPO's full series of sectoral studies on the economic cost of IPR infringement are available here.

 

European IPR Helpdesk Bulletin Issue (24)

We are pleased to inform you that Issue 24 of the European IPR Helpdesk Bulletin has been published and is now available online.

This Bulletin issue is largely dedicated to trade marks and their importance for businesses.

An article from WIPO explains the different ways to obtain trade mark protection and a contribution from the EUIPO provides several updates on the EUTM regime and other relevant issues regarding, inter alia, enforcement. 

EUIPO's EU Observatory on Infringements of Intellectual Property provides some valuable information regarding two useful databases aimed at tackling IP infringements.

INTA reveals the basics of trade names in its article, and our interview with Design and Engineering Company reflects the importance of trade marks for SMEs and their management. 

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 our brand new trade mark soup.

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Boosting the start-ups in Europe: The Commission’s Start-up and Scale-up Initiative

The European Commission has released a communication to foster European start-ups and scale-ups to make them become Europe’s next leaders.

The Commission's “Start-up and Scale-up Initiative” brings together a range of existing and new actions to create a more coherent framework to allow start-ups to grow by addressing the three main elements:

  • removing the barriers for start-ups and scale-ups concerning the regulatory and administrative rules and formalities,
  • creating new opportunities,
  • simplifying the procedures for access to finance.

In this new approach, the Commission attributes particular importance to intellectual property (IP) rights by underlining the fact that IP has a key role in the success of start-ups and innovative SMEs. Therefore, in line with this “Start-up and Scale-up Initiative”, a staff working document has been published on IP, where a set of IP support measures for start-ups and SMEs was put in place. These measures comprise:

  • facilitating access to IP for SMEs,
  • facilitating the use and enforcement of IP, and
  • coordination of IP support and monitoring the impact.

 

For more information:

European Commission’s Press Release

European Commission’s Communication: “Europe's next leaders: the Start-up and Scale-up Initiative”

Staff Working Document on IP: “Putting Intellectual Property at the Service of SMEs to Foster Innovation and Growth”

The European Commission's Factsheet: “A Supportive IPR Framework for SMEs and start-ups”

 

JRC study on Patent Assertion Entities in Europe

Patent assertion is known as enforcement of a patent providing effective patent monetisation options for the patent owners from licensing activities. It has become a common practice in shaping the balance between technology creation and technology dissemination. Especially for the ICT sector, the importance of this practice has given rise to new entities that enforce patents but do not utilise the patented technology, commonly referred to as patent assertion entities (PAEs).

This study provides an overview of patent assertion practices and of patent assertion entities in Europe, taking into consideration their impact on innovation and technology transfer in European ICT markets.

The main objectives of the current study are:

  • providing a description of the different assertion strategies used by PAEs operating in Europe,
  • assessing how PAEs affect innovation and technology transfer in ICT in Europe,
  • drawing policy implications (at national or EU levels) of how innovation in ICT in Europe can be enhanced.

This report was prepared in the context of the three-year research project on European Innovation Policies for the Digital Shift (EURIPIDIS) jointly launched in 2013 by the Joint Research Centre (JRC) and DG CONNECT of the European Commission.

You may read the full report here.