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EUIPO: trade mark licencing brings significant revenue for SMEs

December 24, 2019, By

The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) has released its recent study looking into SMEs and trade mark licencing. The figures are staggering!

The survey has shown that the estimated annual revenues from licensing out EU Trade Marks (EUTM) by all SMEs in the EU is EUR 1.9 billion. This annual revenue is estimated as being EUR 64,924 per firm.

Trade marks are brand identifiers, they establish a brands distinctiveness and are a go to source of knowledge for consumers: if I go to speak to a Briffa lawyer, I know I am going to get great advice, if I go to a Wetherspoons pub, I know I’m going to get a cheap pint!

Owners of trade marks can grant other third parties the right to use the trade mark. Usually this licence is granted in return for some financial payment, the EUIPOs report details how exactly SMEs capitalise on generating revenue from this activity.

The EUIPO details that only 9% of SMEs own a form of registered intellectual property right, this could be a patent, registered design right or registered trade mark. The EUIPO study makes the claim that only 9% of SMEs had attempted to monetise their intellectual property rights.

The report claims that only 7.5% of SMEs licences their trade marks to others, during the period between 2013 – 2017. The average gross capitalised value of EUTMs licenced for their expected life span, of twenty years, is EUR38 billion or an amazing EUR1.3 million per SME!

If you would like to discuss your business’ licencing strategy and whether your intellectual property can be monetized, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us on [email protected] or 020 72886003 and one of our specialist IP lawyers will be happy to have a free consultation with you.

Written by Sam O’Toole, Solicitor