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How to prepare for and manage risk and compliance issues arising from IP infringement 

27 May 2022

By Pratibha Sharma (Senior Executive)

Innovation is critical for maintaining the long-term strategic advantage of a business and for building a brand. To derive the maximum benefit from such innovations, organisations should manage their intellectual property (IP) effectively. For example, this may include actions such as timely patenting of inventions and monitoring the market for infringing use of protected inventions.

In recent years, there has been a significant surge in global patent filings. According to the United Nation’s World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), 277,500 international patents were filed in 2021, a rise of nearly 1 per cent over the previous year. The number of patents granted in India alone has tripled in the last five years. This increase is indicative of the growing importance of acquiring IP rights in India. If IP is not adequately protected, it runs the risk of being used by competitors without consequence, and diluting the business of the original IP owner. Consequently, in this climate, protection of IP is as important as ensuring that third parties do not infringe on your IP rights. For example, in 2021, Ericsson and Samsung signed a multi-year global patent licensing agreement pertaining to cellular technology in a bid to settle all patent-related legal disputes between them.

IP lawsuits filed by a competitor, or in the case of patents, even by non-practising entities (NPE), can result in major financial losses, loss of business advantage/leverage provided by the IP assets, and even a loss of reputation.

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