WHAT IS IP COMMERCIALIZATION?
Regardless of the industry domain, whether in manufacturing or the services sector, businesses create, develop and sell intangible assets. How to carry out commercialization activities, whether by the company itself or not, is a question of corporate culture and business strategy. Companies, especially SMEs, may want to take up commercialization activities on their own for diﬀerent reasons, for example when the company:
- already has enough capabilities for marketing, so that there is no need for partnership,
- does not have enough capacities for building up and/or carrying out such a partnership,
- hesitates to share information with third parties, or does not want to create possible competitors or spend money and make an eﬀort to building partnerships.
The most essential points, which should be taken into account by businesses during the diﬀerent stages of the product development cycle, particularly when they prefer to commercialize their
IP on their own. The following measures may help businesses to keep their IP secret within the company:
- Making sure that employees, researchers and collaborators have in place confidentiality obligations and reminding them from time to time of the importance of complying with these obligations.
- Reviewing public disclosures (such as technical publications or communications with potential partners) to guarantee that confidential information is not included therein.
- Signing confidentiality agreements with partners and testers, prior to performing concept and technical testing and with third parties, when negotiating partnerships.
Checking the IP databases is an important step to verify whether the idea is new and worth being pursued. Besides, it also helps companies to avoid re-inventing and re-developing as well as applying for Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) for an already existing technology, design or brand.
Another type of search, known as Freedom To Operate (FTO) analysis, aims at evaluating whether the owned intellectual asset can be exploited commercially without infringing third party rights. Such an analysis may protect your business from encountering possible infringement allegations, when the product or service is put on the market.