Protecting IP to raise commercial value of products, services

Exporters are advised to protect intellectual property (IP) at home and abroad to increase the commercial value of products and services while accessing or raising finance for their business.

“You have to protect your IPs not just here in the Philippines but also in the international market especially when you are exporting your technologies, your products and services. Under the IP system, we have different ways in protecting your IPs,” Dindo Dumali, intellectual property rights specialist at Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines’ Technology Transfer Division, said during the Usapang Exports session.

Dumali said IP rights enable businesses to enter into licensing agreements, franchise agreements, among others, because they actually control the market with IPR as an exclusive right.

“Because the exclusive rights are granted, you can actually defend yourselves from possible infringement or from third-party infringement so you can defend yourself and part of defending yourself is you can object when your work is being distorted. But more than defending yourselves from infringement, IP also helps you from avoiding infringement yourselves,” he said.

Dumali said IPRs can turn business ideas into profit making assets.

“IP can also help you access or raise your finance for your business or in other words, you can monetize your IP,” he said.

Dumali particularly cited the Innovation and Technology (I-TECH) Lending Program of the Landbank of the Philippines (Landbank) in collaboration with the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) wherein one can use IP as an asset to apply for loans or funding.

“That’s one of the reasons why the DOST right now, if you are actually requesting for funding, part of the requirements that we are actually asking is, is your technology new? Is your technology inventive? Those are the questions that they are actually asking because they will not be funding something that is already existing,” he added.

As a marketing tool, Dumali said IP provides consumers with the confidence of the quality of a product

“If you have an IP portfolio as a company, it will give you that impression that the company is innovative and has long term goals,” he said. “IP can help in market analysis and market strategies, (it can) create and protect new products and services, avoid infringing or freedom to operate.”

For patents, utility models and industrial design, Dumali said businesses can protect IP in international markets via direct route, Paris Convention, and Patent Cooperation Treaty.

Dumali said trademarks can be protected through Madrid System, a convenient and cost-effective solution for registering and managing trademarks worldwide.

“File a single application and pay one set of fees to apply for protection in up to 128 countries,” he said.

For copyright, Dumali said Berne convention deals with the protection of works and the rights of their authors.

“It provides creators such as authors, musicians, poets, painters etc. with the means to control how their works are used, by whom, and on what terms,” he added.

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