Why Small Businesses Need IP Protection More Than the Big Boys?
“My business too small, nobody would copy my IP”
“IP is for big boys”
As a small or medium business owner, you may believe that your intellectual property (IP) isn't worth registering. You might also think that your company is too small to attract infringers, or that registering your IP is only necessary for big corporations with larger budgets.
However, this is far from the truth. In fact, Small Medium Enterprises (SME) need IP Registration more than big corporation. They are often more vulnerable to IP infringement than larger companies. Without proper IP protection, your business is at risk of losing valuable assets and revenue.
In this article, we'll explore why SMEs should prioritize IP protection and how registering your IP can be a smart investment for your business's future.
WHAT IS IP?
First, let's define what we mean by "intellectual property."
Intellectual property (IP) refers to creations of the mind such as inventions, literary and artistic works, designs, symbols, and names used in commerce. IP is an intangible asset that gives exclusive rights to the creator or owner to use their creation for a certain period of time. There are four types of IP that SME owners should be aware of - trademark, patent, copyright, and industrial design.
Trademark is a symbol, word, phrase, or design that identifies and distinguishes the source of a product or service from others. Upon registration, the protection is forever, subject to renewal of every 10 years.
Patent protects an invention and gives the inventor exclusive rights to make, use, and sell their invention for 20 years.
Copyright protects original works of authorship, such as books, music, and artwork.
Industrial design protects the visual appearance of a product. Upon grant, it confer protection of 25 years.
WHY SMEs NEED IP PROTECTION?
1. Low-Cost Investment That Can Save You Money in the Long Run
Registering your IP may seem like an unnecessary expense, but it can actually save you money in the long run. If your IP is infringed upon, the legal fees and damages could be much higher than the cost of registration. By investing a small amount upfront to secure ownership of your IP, you can avoid costly legal battles down the road.
2. Registration of Intellectual Property Establishes Your Ownership and Builds Your Reputation
As a small business, you may be just starting to build your brand and reputation. Registering your IP is the only way to prove your ownership. Without registration, your brand and reputation are at risk, and you may lose your brand, customers or market share. On the other hand, it also adds credibility to your business and can help build trust with customers and investors.
3. Your Intellectual Properties Are Valuable, Regardless of Your Company's Size
You may believe that your business is too small to attract the attention of infringers. However, this is not always the case. Your IPs are valuable, regardless of your company's size. By registering your IP, you can protect your business from competitors who may try to steal your ideas.
On the other hand, how do you know no other people would come out with the same creation as you do?
4. Registered Intellectual Property Can Help You Secure Funding
If you're looking to grow your business, securing funding and partnerships is essential. At this point, investors will want to see that you have protected your IP, and their investment is safe. Registered IP is a valuable asset that can increase the value of your business and make it more attractive to investors. It shows that you have taken the necessary steps to protect your assets and intellectual property.
5. Use Intellectual Property As A Leverage To Scale Your Business
As a SME owner, you can leverage your registered Intellectual Property to scale up your business by recruiting licensees. You may grant the rights to use your IP to licensees in exchange for a fee or royalty payment. These licensees can help you generate revenue without the need of you investing significant resources into manufacturing and distribution. This can expand your market reach and increase your profitability.
To attract potential licensees, you should have a strong IP portfolio that demonstrates the value of your creations, which can make you an attractive partner.
Therefore, licensing intellectual property is a valuable strategy for small businesses looking to scale up their business.
6. Prevent Infringement
Just because you are a small business, it doesn't mean that others won't copy your ideas or products. In fact, SMEs are often more vulnerable to IP infringement because they have limited resources to fight against it. By registering your IP, you can prevent others from using or copying your ideas or products and protect your business from unfair competition.
In summary, SMEs cannot afford to overlook the importance of IP protection. By registering your IP, you can protect your assets, establish your ownership, and build your reputation. It's a low-cost investment that can save you money in the long run and help you secure funding and partnerships. Don't let your company fall victim to IP infringement – prioritize IP protection today.
If you're looking for a reliable partner to help you protect your IP, look no further than IP Gennesis. Our team can provide you with the expertise you need to ensure your IP is properly registered and protected. We understand the unique challenges that small businesses face, and we work tirelessly to ensure that your rights are protected. By partnering with IP Gennesis, you can focus on growing your business while we take care of the legal complexities of IP registration and protection. So don't wait, Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you protect your IP and grow your business.
Registered Trademark, Patent and Design Agent
LL.B (HONS), CLP
Advocate & Solicitor (Non-Practising)
Disclaimer: The above information is merely for general sharing and does not constitute any legal advice. Readers are advised to seek individual advice from professionals.
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