Home News Activation of the 2nd phase of the SME Fund to protect patents and plant varieties

Activation of the 2nd phase of the SME Fund to protect patents and plant varieties

April 25, 2023

The “Ideas Powered for business” SME Fund is a grant programme designed for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to help them protect their industrial property rights. Now, the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) is offering a second phase of these funds with the launch of two new types of vouchers.

In addition to the already well-known Voucher 1 and Voucher 2 for financing the registration of trademarks and designs, Voucher 3 for patent protection and Voucher 4 for Community plant varieties have been added. Both will be available from 24 April.

These will be available to SMEs that apply for the subsidy and will be allocated, as in the past, on a first-come, first-served basis and until the budget is exhausted, with a deadline of 8 December 2023.

SMEs that activate Bono 3 will be able to benefit from up to 1500 euros of subsidy per beneficiary to invest in the protection strategy of their new patents. The subsidised expenses related to patents partially cover up to 75% of the fees for prior art search, examination, search, prosecution and grant of the patent at national level. For European patents, reimbursement of 75% of the prosecution and search fees may also be requested. The total budget of this voucher is 2,000,000 euros, with an activation period that follows the formula of 2 months from grant, plus 2 extendable and 1 year implementation period.

On the other hand, those SMEs that activate Voucher 4 will be able to reach the 225 euros subsidy limit per beneficiary for EU plant varieties. Through this voucher, SMEs will be able to request 50% reimbursement of the cost of the application. The activation period follows the formula of 2 months plus 4 months, which can be extended without a set implementation period. The total budget of this voucher amounts to 100,000 euros.

Update on the implementation process

In addition to the new features of the vouchers, the EUIPO-driven SME Fund has also been updated in terms of the application process. It now has a number of improvements that allow for a quicker and simpler process when applying for the available vouchers. It is important to highlight that those SMEs that have benefited from a voucher in the 2022 call for applications can reapply for the 2023 call for applications.

Apart from the new vouchers available, we remind you that it is still possible to apply for Voucher 2 for the protection of trademarks, designs and models, where each beneficiary can enjoy a maximum limit of up to 1000 euros.

At PONTI & PARTNERS we offer our services to facilitate this task to interested SMEs, processing this aid on their behalf. Follow us on social media and we will inform you about the real-time status of the bonds in question, as well as other useful financing instruments for companies.

If you would like more information, please contact us.

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