Julia House, Director and UK & European Trade Mark Attorney at Albright IP talks about their IP portal and the challenges companies face when managing multiple brands…
Put simply, if you don’t know what you’ve got, then you can’t make it work for you. In a world where protecting your ideas, designs and innovations is increasingly important in order to maintain your competitive edge, effective intellectual property portfolio management is critical.
A lapsed patent or trademark could be all the invitation a competitor needs to enter into what was previously a company’s own commercial space.
For companies which have a large and / or growing intellectual property (IP) portfolio, keeping proper track of what’s on the books can be a real challenge, particularly if they operate in multiple countries with multiple assets.
Failure to do so can be costly – but can also be easily avoided when you’re an Albright IP customer.
For all our major clients, we provide a secure IP information portal accessed via our website, which enables them to keep real-time track of all their IP assets, from patents and trademarks to registered design and copyright. This is something that is free to use and access, its an automated process so there is nothing that needs to be done from the clients point of view.
Everything you have on your IP ‘books’ is listed, and our powerful software can be used to data mine the detail to provide chapter and verse about every single brand or asset. The software has been developed after many years of managing IP for clients and attorneys across the world and is the perfect portfolio tool to manage what can be a complex and time consuming tracking process.
A clear view of your assets
Having clear visibility of your IP assets is imperative to allow you to safeguard your IP and take a strategic approach to your markets, the products within it and your future plans.
Clients can easily view whether patents are about to expire, when renewals are required, which countries they are ‘live’ in and where they may be gaps in trademark coverage. From this real time view, they can identify where action may need to be taken, whether they have one product in many countries, or multiple products in one of more countries.
One of the most valuable aspects is the real time reporting, which allows those people designated to look after IP within a company the ability to showcase it ‘live’ in company meetings. This comes without the need to collate all the data beforehand – a significant administrative saving.
It’s in the detail
It’s not just about the nuts and bolts of day-to-day IP management. Businesses need to be fully aware of all their IP assets if they’re going to successfully enforce commercial rights and protect their markets and profits. IP assets are often listed on the balance sheet and may be used as a surety to raise finance – another compelling reason for companies to be in control of all their IP asset detail.
The Albright-developed software provides the perfect password-protected platform for our clients to better manage their portfolio and ensure they’re getting maximum value from their assets, across their lifetime. It can also help clients identify IP assets that are no longer performing for them, or which no long fit with business strategy – and in turn, make it easier to divest if appropriate.
Clients can also use the portal to instruct us to take a particular action, for example, if they want us to explore expanding a patent to a new territory or confirm details of regulations in a specific country or market.
So, if you have a portfolio of brands, our advice is simple. Make sure that you know where you IP is and we’d encourage you to think about whether you’re making full use of our tried and tested tool. If you are in any doubt, then come and talk to us about the Albright IP Portal and we can ensure your IP is working for you and not the other way around.
If you need to defend or oppose a European Patent, please contact us via email, by telephone: +44 (0) 1242 691 801, or using the form below and we will be happy to advise and guide you.