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Protect your assets

What is Intellectual Property?

All businesses own or use IP that needs to be protected. IP can include your business name, logo, website, technical innovation, software, images, and the look or design of your products. At Growth Hub, we provide small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) with the expert help and guidance they need to safeguard their IP.

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Why do I need to know?

IP assets play an important role in the sustainability and growth of your business. Your business needs to understand the changes to UK Intellectual Property law to ensure the smooth departure from the EU’s IP systems.

The changes affect several areas, including:

In our digital age, your business is likely to have benefited from the internet. Digital marketing and online sales help products and services reach a wider audience. This access has increased the chances of IP theft. You’re therefore at greater risk of having your ideas, products and services infringed upon.

No one will check to see if your IP has been infringed. It’s your responsibility to ensure that you safeguard your business’ assets.

There are four main types of IP:

  • Designs: protecting the overall look of a product including the colour, shape and texture
  • Patents: protecting new inventions; how they work, what they do, how they do it, what they’re made of and how they’re made
  • Trademarks: protecting brands, such as your business name or logo. Trademarks can consist of a word, phrase, picture, or a combination of these
  • Copyright: protecting written, dramatic, musical and artistic works including photos, recordings, software and databases.

Safeguard your ideas: People will always want to copy successful ideas. Depending on the circumstances, you can use patents, trademarks or copyright to protect your IP. These prevent competitors from using your ideas for their own profit. IP protection applies to businesses of all types and sizes.

Protect business growth: As an SME, it’s important to protect any unique products or services that you own. Competitors can use your success to take away your market share, resulting in slow growth or loss of revenue for your business. Pursuing the guilty party without legal protection can be both draining and time-consuming.

An IP Audit is conducted by an IP professional to give an individual report to support your strategic business planning, identifying both opportunities and risks. It will give the business a clear picture of their intangible assets, so they can manage their own IP appropriately. This may lead to a new plan for growth through maximising the value of IP. The Audit report will provide advice and guidance on developing an IP management strategy and make recommendations on actions to take.

Find below resources to help you get ready for an IP Audit.

IP Health Check

WIPO IP Diagnostics

Goldseam® intellectual property profiling tool

“If you're serious about growing your business, have ambitious growth plans, and want to fast-track your growth - you need the Growth Hub.” – Helen Tanner, Data3

Video credit: IP basics: What is Intellectual Property?

How can Growth Hub help me with IP?

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Revealing your ideas to the wrong people in the wrong circumstances could mean they are stolen or not protectable. Consider what you should keep private and confidential.

Speak with a Growth Hub Executive about IP and your business.

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