Innovation is a synonym of change, development or progress. In the digital age, protecting new ideas is key for the success of any company. This is precisely one of the objectives of industrial and intellectual property: ensuring these new ideas are protected and helping companies to innovate and improve their competitive advantage.
On iFriday, on 30 November, we had the chance to talk to Clara Pombo and Pablo López, from the renowned law firm Clarke, Modet & Co, who explained a number of basic concepts related to industrial and intellectual property, models for protecting patents and trademarks, and industrial and intellectual property trends that affect the sectors where we operate, among other topics.
What is industrial and intellectual property?
“Intellectual property is what we consider to be copyright whereas industrial property is everything related to patents, industrial design and trademarks”, said Pablo López, Director of Large Accounts at Clarke, Modet & Co.
In recent years, industrial and intellectual property has become an extremely important element for companies of all sizes. The number of intangible assets of companies has increased exponentially. According to López, “the value of an enterprise is no longer determined by the amount of factories or sales figures but by acquired knowledge or the value of its brands and patents”.
Appropriate levels of protection, exploitation and defence of industrial and intellectual property rights require a harmonised, uniform and comprehensive working approach so that all the areas of the organisation (legal, marketing, RD&I, finance, HR, etc.) act efficiently and in coordination with each other.
But how can this discipline help to manage innovation properly?
“Industrial and intellectual property is just another tool. Innovation is created by people, talent or ideas. The important thing is to have a strategy in place to be able to foster and understand where the innovation and the core of the business is”, stated Clara Pombo, Corporate Direction IP Strategist at Clarke, Modet & Co.
According to Pombo, this strategy has to include “creation, ownership and management of industrial and intellectual property assets to ensure the growth of the company and return on investment”.
The sector in Spain
“The construction and infrastructure sector in our country has huge growth potential, since it is not greatly developed. A significant portfolio of patents can be generated for certain products which will help to have a competitive advantage in the market”, explained Pablo López.
In Clara Pombo's opinion, trends in the sector are linked to block chain, smart contracts, robotics, drones, big data, AI, machine learning, virtual reality and augmented reality.
Lastly, she highlighted that “companies devoted to infrastructures and services who put up industrial and intellectual property barriers will have a competitive advantage given all the digitalisation of the sector”.