Has the economy impacted your foreign filing strategy? What do you see as the defining IP trend of 2011?
The third annual U.S. IP Trends Survey, sponsored by inovia, is now open for U.S. patentees and your input is needed to make the survey a success. The results of the survey will provide an in-depth look at the global outlook and foreign filing strategy of U.S. companies and universities. It is anticipated that the survey will take only between five to fifteen minutes to complete, and responses will remain strictly confidential. Only aggregate, anonymous information will be made public.
Last year’s survey was a great success, with 150 companies weighing in on their IP strategy and outlook for 2011. It is hoped that this year even more companies and universities participate, given even greater insights for the industry.
Last year’s survey — The U.S. 2011 Global Patent & IP Trends Indicator — produced some introducing results:
- The majority of respondents cited “cost containment” and/or “USPTO reform” as the most important topic for the IP industry in 2010.
- 46% of respondents brought some IP steps in-house in 2010, as compared to 72% of respondents from the prior year’s survey who brought some steps in-house in 2009.
- Nearly 60% of respondents were working on a reduced IP budget going into 2011.
- 45% of those were cutting the number of countries they file in dropped Japan in 2010. Multiple different reasons were given, including high cost of obtaining a Japanese patent and low applicant success rate.
Justin Simpson, a patent attorney and the founder of inovia, spoke with Renee last year after the release of the 2011 Survey. Justin pointed out that the survey showed increased tightening of the IP budget belt in 2010, with 19% saying that they filed less than they had anticipated at the beginning of the year. Simpson made this prediction about what the 2012 survey might show:
Looking forward into 2011, the general feeling from the survey is that it is not time to loosen the belts yet. It is still quite tight times. Even companies who we’ve spoken to that have financially quite well; their IP budgets have not been expanded in light of their success. Not very many companies have done well in this period but a few have. But basically most of the patent departments are being asked to do more with less and so one of the things they are doing is being very judicious about which countries to file in.
What will the 2012 Survey show? Will we see increased in-sourcing of work? Is there optimism or pessimism about 2012? Have companies and universities continued to cut back on the number of countries in which they file? Is there as much of a strong sentiment in favor of a unified patent system as their was previously? The only way we will really be able to gauge industry sentiment and practice is if there are enough responses, so I encourage those in companies and at universities to take a few moments to take the survey.
It is anticipated that the 2012 Survey will be released in early March, 2012, and should provide useful information about the direction of the industry and evolving business models and practices.
inovia is one of the largest foreign filing providers in the world. Over 1000 companies, law firms and universities have used our online platform, inovia.com, to reduce the cost and complexity of their PCT national stage entry, European patent validation and patent translation work.