IP Incentivising the Ecosystem of Start- Ups
When starting a business, many factors must be taken into account, including branding, market segmentation, and financial development. However, one of the main causes of market difficulties is the protection of intellectual property (IP). IP is an invaluable resource for any company, but especially for young ones. It increases the likelihood that appealing opportunities will be attracted while levelling the playing field for incumbents and entrepreneurs.
The most costly and time-consuming form of acquired intellectual property, patents offer unrivalled protection. A start-up’s value rises and its financial prospects are enhanced when it patents its innovations. Investors are also more likely to buy a company with strong intellectual property protections. This is so that it can produce a bigger resource to compete with industry giants. Therefore, having patentable ideas is essential to the success of a new company.
A Vital Component of Start-up’s Success
In today’s competitive and dynamic world, IP can be a product or service’s unique selling proposition (USP). It aids in developing a tenable and convincing differentiator for the start-up. Furthermore, by erecting a high barrier to entry, it aids start-ups in outpacing their rivals in terms of growth. IP protection is crucial for start-ups because it faces higher priority because it adds value to the venture.
The Start-up Genome Project also aims to map, model, and assess what it takes for start-ups to succeed. For start-ups to gain a competitive edge in the market, IP is a crucial component. This greatly increases the level of trust that consumers, investors, and other stakeholders have in the start-up. This trust aspires to be a market leader in its industry in addition to being successful. Additionally, new inventions are created every day in engineering start-ups. The importance of IP protection is greatly increased in the manufacturing and engineering sectors. IP protection thus has a significant brand value attachment.
The creators of start-ups are small business owners who transformed a simple idea into a significant organisation. While capital investment, land, labour, and management are essential requirements for anyone starting a business. However, the crucial function of intellectual property rights is changing in order to compete against industrial giants.
Since the company is still young or it is too early to spot thefts, the likelihood of similar competitors stealing your ideas is higher. It is crucial to be ready for unforeseen dangers as a result. The four most important types of intellectual property rights that every start-up should protect are patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets.
Government Programs and Preferences For New Businesses And MSMEs
Over the past months, the Indian government has developed a variety of start-up kits and start-up funds to support start-ups in the nation. Additionally, the Start-up India programme of DIPP offers several exemptions from the IP protection fees for qualified start-ups. Start-ups now pay 80% less for patent protection, compared to 50% less for trademark protection.
Additionally, a start-up may use the Patent Office’s expedited examination service, which enables the patent application to be resolved within 12 to 18 months of the filing date. Therefore, IP protection is less expensive for start-ups than it would be for established businesses. For Indian start-ups, it’s crucial that they concentrate on developing and identifying IP while pursuing innovation and protection in order to succeed in their respective industries.
As a result, the Indian government has unveiled a list of start-up programmes that are divided among various ministries and departments:
- Start-up India Initiative and Make in India
- Expedited Patent Examination (Available for Start-ups only)
- Discounted Filing Fee (80% discount to start-ups)
- Start-ups Intellectual Property Protection (SIPP)
- Support for International Patent protection in Electronics & IT (SIP-EIT)
- Schemes by M/o MSMEs
- Accelerating Growth of New India’s innovations (AGNIi)
- Cell for IPR Promotion and Management (CIPAM)
Why Is Ip Crucial?
Start-ups must have a clear plan for how to move forward with their concept and must secure all legal aspects of their business. For example, once you’ve decided on the perfect name for your business, you must register a trademark to prevent others from using it. Start-ups can avoid intellectual property problems that could result in hefty fines, expensive legal fees, or even closure by understanding their legal rights.
Patents, trademarks, and designs are the three most important types of intellectual property that a start-up can use to safeguard its intangible assets and make money from their use. A patent can be used to enclose an invention that introduces a new method of doing something and is regarded as the gold standard of intellectual property protection.
It is the most effective way to encourage ongoing innovation and development of products, processes, and services and to make sure that inventors are given due credit for their work. Trademarks, on the other hand, are distinctive symbols used to designate particular goods and services.
Words, phrases, numbers, logos, graphics, and three-dimensional forms are all examples of registered trademarks. The idea is that by registering a trademark, one can use a legally recognised mark to represent the calibre, heritage, and distinctiveness of their work and set it apart from that of competitors. A product’s aesthetics may be protected by designs. The objects’ functioning or functionalities are not covered by the protection; it only covers their visual characteristics.
Due to the fact that most start-ups are made up of friends, colleagues, and family, their workplaces tend to be informal. Long-term problems may arise for such start-ups, especially if specific formal requirements are not met. To prevent the theft of a company’s intellectual property and trade secrets, non-disclosure agreements must be in place between the founders, employees, and suppliers. Since IP rights are useless without prior disclosure, a start-up must constantly keep in mind the requirement for prior disclosure of the inventive product or method throughout the commercialization process.
Therefore, before submitting a patent application or an application for an industrial design, innovators must seek professional advice on product commercialization and process disclosure. The product may be made available to the public once these issues have been carefully considered and the necessary safeguards have been put in place.
It is impossible to overstate the critical importance of protecting intellectual property. Without effective management of its intellectual property, a business is simply not likely to succeed. Some of the more frequent errors businesses make, like forgetting to obtain an IP address for the company, may be very challenging to fix if discovered too late. As was previously mentioned, timely registration is frequently a requirement, and failure to do so could result in another company acquiring the contested rights. It is obvious that in order to facilitate development, prevent infringement, and increase revenue, intellectual property protection must be a crucial part of every start-up’s business plan.