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SMEs can currently apply for funding for an IP audit via one of the UKIPO’s partners including GrowthAccelerator, Welsh Government and Scottish Enterprise, for companies based in England, Wales and Scotland respectively.
To be eligible to apply, the business has to be engaged with one of these partner’s schemes. The business can then be referred to the UKIPO by the relevant partner with which they are engaged. The business and its advisor must outline the reasons why they think their business would benefit from an IP audit, by either building a management strategy for already owned IP or supporting the commercialisation of a new product or service that would help the business to grow.
The business can select a registered attorney, or other qualified IP professional, of their choice and the UKIPO will cover the costs of an audit of up to £3,000 (including VAT). The audit will cover all aspects of IP including patents, trade marks, designs and copyright, and will also cover some of the background technical know-how in understanding how to build an IP management strategy.
The UKIPO are looking to fund 200 audits by the end of March 2013 and here at Wilson Gunn, we have provided many tailored assessments of IP within a variety of different businesses and we have worked closely with our clients to help them develop detailed IP management strategies.
In carrying out an IP audit, we can help a business to identify any under-utilized IP assets, identify any potential threats to the business’ bottom line and work with them to develop tailored strategies that could help to improve the business’ position in the market. It is important for a business to recognize which IP assets are most valuable to it so that their value can be realized and effectively protected.
If an IP audit is something that you feel could benefit your business, and/or you would like more information on this topic, please contact us.