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IPO launches new survey on intellectual property and business growth

  • New government business survey examines the role of intellectual property (IP) and business growth
  • IP-intensive industries account for more than a quarter of UK output – around £300 billion a year

  • Intangible assets, often protected by intellectual property, can represent approximately 70 to 80% of a company’s value
  • The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) aims to explore the awareness and use of IP assets by companies looking to grow

The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) is asking companies to share their views on the role intellectual property plays in supporting business growth. It invites you to take part in a short survey.

In a modern global economy, innovation, creativity, design and brand awareness are becoming increasingly important for business success. All of these elements are subject to intellectual property rights such as copyrights, trademarks, patents and designs.

The IPO aims to help companies manage their IP rights effectively. It is conducting a review of the UK IP-powered financial ecosystem and IP insurance landscape. The new survey is part of this review.

The survey covers a wide range of topics. Answers help the IPO:

  • Better understand how companies can raise external funding – including how to use their IP assets to secure funding
  • Explore corporate awareness, perception and usage of IP litigation insurance products
  • You will better understand how to most effectively help companies manage their IP assets

The IPO wants to hear from companies of all sizes and across a wide range of industries that have intellectual property – whether sole traders, start-ups, established companies or large enterprises.

The IPO’s Director of Economics and International Policy, Ben Llewellyn-Jones, said:

In a rapidly developing global economy, access to finance remains a key issue for every company. To ensure companies can capitalize on new opportunities, we want to help them understand and effectively use their intellectual property to help drive economic growth and prosperity.

We want to hear from as many companies as possible – and especially from innovative companies that want to grow. This will help us understand their problems and target our support to their needs. We want businesses of all shapes and sizes to have their say, so we urge them to complete our survey by the end of January.

Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA) Vice President Matt Dixon said:

CIPA enthusiastically supports the IPO survey and encourages all companies to participate. It is widely accepted that intellectual property accounts for a significant portion of the value of virtually all businesses. Therefore, it is important that business owners are able to identify and protect their intellectual property, especially when seeking growth financing.

The survey will help the IPO better understand companies’ awareness and use of intellectual property rights, which should help better target the IPO’s advice and support. This is a big step to support companies even better.

We want to hear from you

The survey closes on February 2, 2024. Responses will be analyzed and a summary of themes will be published on GOV.UK later in 2024.

To participate, visit the IP and Business Growth Survey.

Notes for editors:

1) A 2022 Intellectual Property Office report into the use of intellectual property rights across UK industry found the following:

  • Around 95% of all UK business sectors had companies that held at least one IP right
  • Industries with above-average use of intellectual property rights accounted for 26.9% (£298.5bn) of non-financial value added in the UK, 15.5% (4.5m) of total UK employment and 52.1% (£159.7 billion) of goods exported
  • 35.4% of UK industries were found to have above average IP usage in one of the four IP rights considered (patents, trademarks, registered designs and copyrights), with 14.9% of UK industries (92) experiencing high IP usage had

2) The latest figures from the ONS (Office for National Statistics) showed that investment in intangible assets was £168.7 billion in 2019 – £8.5 billion more than investment in tangible assets in the same period.

3) A previous study commissioned by the IPO also estimated that 70% of the value of a typical company lies in intangible assets. This research also suggests that the value of such assets may not always be visible to corporate managers.

4) The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) is the official UK government agency responsible for intellectual property rights (IP), including patents, designs, trademarks and copyrights. IPO is an executive agency promoted by the Ministry of Science, Innovation and Technology.

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