The Management of Intellectual Property Rights. Dr Derek Palmer

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1 The Management of Intellectual Property Rights Dr Derek Palmer ProspectIP 2013

2 The Management of Intellectual Property Rights Introduction to Intellectual Property (IP) and Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Intellectual property rights (IPR), very broadly, are rights granted to creators and owners of works that are the result of human intellectual creativity. These works can be in the industrial, scientific, literary or artistic domains. They can be in the form of an invention, a manuscript, a software programme, or a business name, as examples. In the current knowledge economy intellectual property (IP) assets are becoming increasingly important as a means of providing businesses with a competitive advantage and enhancing their value both of which are important on an exit/sale and when raising capital or investment from banks or investors. Surveys of UK businesses by the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) show the increasing value that IP provides, where typically it can represent as much as 80% of a companies book value. What is clear for many businesses is that the value created and protected by their IP can underpin future growth and financial success. As IP assets cannot be seen or touched it is sometimes hard to appreciate their true value. For example, you could protect: the branding of your goods / services using a registered trade mark; the way your product looks using a registered design; how a technology works using a patent; and any literature or artistic work automatically using copyright. Protecting your IP is very important for your business success. As with any asset, IP could be stolen or used without the permission of the owner. In such instances the onus is on the owner to enforce their IP rights which can be an expensive process. On the flip side a company accused of alleged IP infringement would have to defend themselves. Intellectual Property (IP) Insurance Intellectual Property (IP) insurance is a specialised form of insurance offered by underwriters who are able to provide policies tailored to the risks associated with managing, using and developing IP.

3 Types of Intellectual Property (IP) insurance IP insurance is available from professional insurers and the coverage provided relates to a wide spectrum of IP rights including patents, designs, trade marks, copyright, trade secrets, website domain names and even commercial agreements. The philosophy of IP insurance is to financially support the insured in regard to protecting and enforcing their IP rights, as well as providing finance to defend freedom-to-operate. The types of insurance available can cover a range of needs or cover against a single activity i.e. enforcing your rights against others. The types of cover include: General IP insurance - Insurance which protects the IP owner against losses due to third party infringement of their IP. The general cover insurance also includes liability insurance to protect against infringement claims by a third party IP holder. IP enforcement litigation insurance - Specifically insures the owner of the IP against infringement by a third party, known as "offensive insurance". Coverage helps fund the expense of enforcing protection of the IP with funds available to support a number of activities that help the owner to go after any infringers of their rights. IP infringement liability insurance A form of liability insurance for product producers, licensees and vendors who may find themselves accused of infringing a third parties IP right. This is termed "defensive insurance" and funds defence and indemnity, supporting defence costs or claims & damages. The UK government through the Department of Business Innovation & Skills (BIS) and the UK IPO are actively encouraging SMEs to protect their IP. Traditionally IP insurance has been seen as the domain of large enterprises and corporates and not appropriate or suitable for SMEs. However this is changing due to the availability of cost effective IP insurance policies specially developed for the SME market.

4 About the Author Dr Derek Palmer A proven IP and innovation practitioner with a strong entrepreneurial background and a passion for technology commercialisation. Derek has over 18 years experience in technology commercialisation and has had first-hand experience in starting, securing equity finance, developing and commercialising IP rich businesses. He has co-founded two IP rich technology businesses, a number of other non-technology based businesses and has a clear understanding of how IP should be managed and how it adds value to a company. Company Details ProspectIP 49 Oxford Street Leicester LE1 5XY T: E: W: ProspectIP is an intellectual property (IP) management company. We are innovation-led and this is reflected in the way we work with our clients. Our modular and professional IP services help innovative organisations overcome the challenges they face in developing and profiting from their IP. ProspectIP was established in 2006 as an initiative of Leicester's De Montfort University, delivering IP support to East Midlands-based corporates and SMEs. Over the years we have developed a comprehensive range of services and a practical approach to helping our clients benefit from their innovations and intellectual assets. We are now an independent business with access to a global network of highly-experienced IP partners, covering Europe, India and the USA. Our services complement and build upon those typically offered by IP lawyers and attorneys, and our unique Innovation Cycle model helps organisations to better understand and tackle their specific IP challenges. Through our experience in managing and commercialising IP, our transparent and effective services offer expert support targeted at our clients' specific innovation needs.

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