In our knowledge-based economy, there is a good chance your
business has intellectual property that may increase your business’:
Your ideas, inventions, designs, artwork, processes, names and logos
are business assets that increase its value and may be worth protecting.
Do I need IP protection?
Protecting your intellectual property is like buying insurance for tangible assets, such as buildings or machinery. You probably need some form of insurance. But what kind?
- How do you know if you should patent your invention, or if trademark or copyright protection would be more appropriate?
- Is it worth spending the money to protect whatever gives you a competitive edge over your competitors? What should you prioritize?
- How do the laws differ between provinces? How do language laws affect you if you do business in the Province of Quebec?
- Do you need protection in every country where you do business?
- How do you protect your IP when you need to share it with employees or third parties?
- Do you advertise, have a web site, collect private information?
- Do you package or sell goods that require adherence to standards?
- Do you import or export goods or services?
What else does IP include?
To answer this question, you should consider conducting an intellectual property audit. An IP audit often comes up in the context of the sale or acquisition of a business but there is so much more to it.
Your intellectual property, such as your ideas, brands and inventions, are your key differentiators. If they are valuable to you, if your business is at risk if you lose them: identify them and protect them.
An IP audit is a business tool, the value of which is not always used to full advantage. From enhancing the marketability of a business and better exploiting its products or services to providing the business with knowledge to expand the business or raise capital, these are just a few examples of how determining the strength and economic value of the IP assets can help businesses identify competitive advantage or opportunities for growth. The identification, protection and control of your IP can also improve risk management decisions and help get better control of the costs associated with your IP.