July 5, 2018

Conference “Industrial Property in the Global Hubs of Innovation”

On June 22 2018, PONTI organized the conference “Industrial Property in the Global Hubs of Innovation” in the mVentures space at Barcelona Tech City, with the attendance of numerous representatives of public research centers, technology centers, universities technology transfer offices, Start Ups and technology-based companies.

Barcelona Tech City represents the digital innovation and technology base ecosystem of Barcelona and has recently been highlighted by Forbes magazine as one of the most promising entrepreneurship centers worldwide.

However, Barcelona and its ecosystem do not appear in the leading positions with respect to other international innovation clusters, in the rankings of patent applications.

With this (first) conference and with a permanent working space in Barcelona Tech City, Ponti wants to collaborate with the local innovation environment so that it incorporates the management of industrial property in its strategy of introducing innovative products and services into the market, and as an investment attraction factor.

The conference, opened by Joan Salvà, Managing Partner at Ponti, featured keynote speakers from the Spanish Patent Office, the European Patent Office, Inkemia IUCT Group and IAM Magazine. On behalf of Ponti, our colleagues Joaquín Ferrer, European Patent Agent, and Josep Mª Pujals, Responsible for Business Development, participated in the sessions.

Mónica Castilla Baylos, Head of the Department of Diffusion, Communication and Company Relations of the SPTO, pointed out that industrial property assets represent around 80-90% of the value of an organization, and it is essential to protect them in order to preserve their strategic role. To this end, she underlined the fundamental role played by the SPTO through the 2017-2020 Strategic Plan, in which collaboration agreements with the Autonomous Communities take on relevance, as well as internationalization through agreements with the different industrial property offices of third countries and international organizations, the role of IP as a source of information or the implementation of the new patent law. Download Slide.

Alberto Casado, Vice President of the European Patent Office, highlighted the role of the second largest intergovernmental organization in Europe which extends its scope of action to several countries in Asia or Africa by means of new collaboration agreements.

According to Alberto Casado, the United States is the largest user of the European Patent System (although a Chinese company, Huawei, led the ranking of patent applications in 2017), followed by Germany and Japan. In relation to the technological areas in which more patents are applied for, medical, digital and computer technologies stand out. In 2017, of the total number of European patent applications, 24% were submitted by SMEs and 43% contained some kind of software element. He stressed that in the annual survey of IAM magazine, the EPO is considered by users as the office providing the highest quality. Download Slide.

Ángeles Molina, head of IP at Inkemia Group, a high-tech SME listed on the MAB stock market, described the decisive role of industrial property in creating value and the company’s growth since its birth 21 years ago. According to Ángeles Molina, the industrial property strategy has been a key factor in the process of internationalization of the company and in the successful transfer to the market of new products and services, either through the licensing of its industrial property or through the creation of new spin-offs, such as Plasmia Biotech or Myogem. Download Slide.

Joff Wild, Chief Editor of the IAM Magazine, explained that a global innovation hub must assume as its own the strategy of protection of industrial property against that of its disclosure or academic publication in order to capture the value of its innovations. To this effect, Barcelona and the different stakeholders must understand the industrial property assets as a strategic investment rather than as a cost. Download Slide.

Joaquín Ferrer, European Patent Agent of Ponti, described the scenarios in which inventions that implement software can be patentable if they are provided with a technical effect, highlighting the greater certainty and guidance offered in this area by the European Patent Office, in relation to other patent offices. Download Slide.

Josep Mª Pujals, Head of Business Development at Ponti, emphasized the importance of technology-based Start-ups incorporating in their strategy the management of industrial property as a factor of success for the introduction of new products and services in markets, in the context of global value chains and information technologies. Download Slide.