The International Patent & Design Search Company

News & Insights

6th European Intellectual Property Forum – Are you attending?

Are you attending the 6th European Intellectual Property Forum in Munich? We’re attending the EIPF next month and looking forward to meeting you in person. Timothy Parry – Business and Finance Director, and Morgan Parry – Business Development Representative will be there.

If you’re attending in person pop by our Exhibition Space, alternatively if you’d like to book a meeting slot with Tim and Morgan click here.

As a founding partner of Patent Seekers Tim has expertise in providing and developing Intellectual Property search and analysis services to meet clients needs. This includes the development of innovative products that leverage patent data to provide strategic business insights.

Ask Tim and Morgan about our latest innovations including StartPoint and how they can work for you.  In addition, for your in-house search needs ask about a free trial to PatWorld, your global patent database solution.

We look forward to seeing you at the 6th European Intellectual Property Forum in Munich and hope that you have a successful and productive conference.

StartPoint© Analytics Report – The StartPoint© Analytics Report provides the latest product in market research and competitive intelligence. Providing patent and non-patent research for Inventors and Entrepreneurs it utilises the unique power of patent data. StartPoint© is the affordable tool to help you through your invention journey.

If you enjoy our content here, you’ll love the stuff we share on LinkedIn, follow us now.

Youth in IP: Protecting the Future

In celebration of World IP Day 2022, IP and Youth and Innovating for a Better Future, Chelsey Edwards Patent Analyst at Patent Seekers shares her thoughts on the topic, entitled Youth in IP: Protecting the Future.

This year, social media usage has reached an all-time high with a double-digit increase in social media users predicted to spend 12.5 trillion hours online, according to the Digital 2022 Global Overview Report – published in partnership between We Are Social and Hootsuite. With more than two-thirds (67.1%) of the world’s population now using mobile phones and 92.1% of which using them to access the internet, time spent using connected tech continues to rise.

A recent survey of 1,500 British 16 to 25-year-olds commissioned by Samsung UK’s Solve for Tomorrow programme revealed that 89% of Gen Z say they would like to run their own business, with 70% looking to launch within the next 12 months. However, 39% revealed that they don’t know where to start and 22% believe they don’t have access to the support they need. Living in a world dominated by an online presence, it seems easier than ever to feel disconnected from others and the world around us. Despite this, 67% of young people aim to solve pressing global issues relating to education, sustainability, social isolation or diversity and inclusion, with their entrepreneurial endeavours. Embracing the ever-expanding presence of youth online may present a unique opportunity to merge the worlds of social media and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) learning. With a shortfall of over 173,000 workers in the STEM sector, it’s no secret that the UK is in the thick of a skills shortage.

A robust STEM education is fundamental to the economy as it allows students to work collaboratively; developing critical thinking, project management and problem-solving skills. Combining these skills with an understanding of the fundamentals of Intellectual Property (IP) could inspire the next generation of innovators. However, it is not enough to only teach students how to design, code and invent. They must be taught how to protect what they create or potentially face theft, misappropriation, and infringement. A way in which we can supplement a student’s IP knowledge is through incentivised innovation programmes. Programmes such as Solve for Tomorrow, Innovate UK’s Young Innovators Awards, British Inventor Show Awards and James Dyson Awards, aim to invest in young innovators along with providing them with valuable connections and mentorship in their respective industries. Winners can also bag themselves vital funding to help advance innovation and launch products to market.

One such individual is Penelope Roberts. The University of Essex PhD student received funding from Innovate UK Smart Grants for her company RoboNurse4NHS for their development of robotic companions for care homes and hospitals. Penelope hopes her innovation can help reduce the strain on current hospital and home care services by providing socially aware, semi-autonomous robotic companions as customisable and personalised assistants. As can be seen in figure 1, the development of technology utilising artificial life increased to an all-time high during 2019.

Fig. 1: A bar chart demonstrating the rapid increase in the number of patent applications under the classification encompassing Artificial life, i.e., computers simulating life since 2015 (created using data generated by PatWorld).  Patent application data for application years 2021 and 2022 may not truly reflect actual activity due to delays during the 18-month patent publication cycle.

Another example of the success of such programmes is Seyed Nasrollah, graduate of Imperial College, the University of Cambridge and regional winner of the Young Innovators Programme in partnership with The Prince’s Trust. Seyed believes his company, Unifiq Games, can use machine learning to revolutionise the games industry and help address the STEM-skills crisis facing the UK, through developing a social video game rooted in “a digital playground based on the laws of physics down to the atom”. The advancement of modern technology by way of machine learning continues to drive innovative tech solutions, as is evident by the increase in patent applications within this sector in recent years (see figure 2 below).

Fig. 2: A bar chart demonstrating the rapid increase in the number of patent applications under the classification encompassing Machine learning since 2015 (created using data generated by PatWorld). Patent application data for application years 2021 and 2022 may not truly reflect actual activity due to delays during the 18-month patent publication cycle.

Growth in the number of patent families published under STEM related classifications such as Artificial life, i.e. computers simulating life and Machine learning, as demonstrated in figures 1 and 2 would seem contradictory to the reported shortfall of over 173,000 workers in the STEM sector. However, it may allude to the lack of support and access to research, development and IP knowledge experienced by today’s youth. Invention requires creativity, the ability to imagine the possibilities and wonders of the world, and of course excellent subject knowledge; particularly in the realm of STEM. While innovation and transforming novelty into a commercial product is essential in rapidly changing markets, without invention innovation is impossible. Lack of inventive step or novelty will render an idea unpatentable, highlighting the significance of invention. Despite numerous grants and awards available for young innovators, there appears to be a clear lack of incentivised programmes encouraging the creation of novel inventions and knowledge on how to appropriately protect them through the patenting process.

The European Patent Office (EPO) have now established the Young Inventors prize in a bid to acknowledge young, problem-solving inventors across all technical fields with a focus on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals defined in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This agenda recognizes that “ending poverty and other deprivations must go hand-in-hand with strategies that improve health and education, reduce inequality, and spur economic growth – all while tackling climate change and working to preserve our oceans and forests”. Programmes such as this could help provide Gen Z with STEM-skills and IP knowledge required to unlock their entrepreneurial potential. With its first ever winners’ ceremony being held on the 21st of June 2022, there will surely be corporations, charities and governing bodies looking to follow suit.

Chelsey Edwards is a patent analyst at Patent Seekers and is experienced in a broad range of biological research methods with an in depth knowledge of recent advancements within oncology. She has an MSc Cancer Biology and Therapeutics and BSc Hons Bioveterinary Science.

Resources used:

https://wearesocial.com/sg/blog/2022/01/digital-2022-another-year-of-bumper-growth/

https://www.samsung.com/uk/solvefortomorrow/

https://eandt.theiet.org/content/articles/2021/11/engineering-and-tech-giants-join-forces-to-stem-15bn-annual-skills-gap/

https://studenthut.com/articles/stem-skills-shortage-myth-reality and https://yetiacademy.com/reasons-why-stem-education-is-important-in-2022/

https://www.samsung.com/uk/solvefortomorrow/

https://www.britishinventionshow.com/copy-of-invention

https://www.jamesdysonaward.org/en-GB/news/inventors-of-the-future-submit-your-idea-to-the-james-dyson-award/

https://ktn-uk.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/0465_KTN_YoungInnovators2122_v5.pdf

https://www.unifiq.com/

https://www.epo.org/law-practice/legal-texts/html/caselaw/2019/e/clr_iv_c_3_4_2.htm

https://www.epo.org/news-events/events/european-inventor/young-inventors.html

https://sdgs.un.org/goals

 

 

Attending INTA 2022 in Washington DC?

Are you attending INTA 2022 in Washington DC? We’re attending INTA this month and looking forward to the opportunity to network in person again. Christian Hartmann our Head of Business Development in North America will be there and representing Patent Seekers at the conference.

If you’re attending INTA 2022 in Washington DC why not book a meeting with Christian.

Christian Hartmann is the Head of Business Development for Patent Seekers Research Inc. He regularly advises clients on their Intellectual Property search and analysis needs and has overseen the development of innovative products that leverage patent data to provide strategic business insights.

Ask him about our latest innovations including StartPoint and how they can work for you.  In addition, for your in-house search needs ask about a free trial to PatWorld, your global patent database solution.

We look forward to seeing you in Washington DC and hope that you have a successful and fun trip.

APRIL 30–MAY 4 | WASHINGTON, D.C.
IN-PERSON + VIRTUAL

Come away with new perspectives, fresh ideas, and a renewed connection with the trademark community, and embrace myriad opportunities to make lasting memories with colleagues and friends from around the world.

 

StartPoint© Analytics Report – The StartPoint© Analytics Report provides the latest product in market research and competitive intelligence. Providing patent and non-patent research for Inventors and Entrepreneurs it utilises the unique power of patent data. StartPoint© is the affordable tool to help you through your invention journey.

If you enjoy our content here, you’ll love the stuff we share on LinkedIn, follow us now.

 

Global Capital Summit Takes Place Online This Week

The Global Capital Summit takes place as an online interactive event this week.Global Capital Summit takes place online March 2022

Joining them for 2 days of interactive workshops is our Head of Business Development for North America Christian Hartmann. He will join the discussion with some of the most influential leaders at the intersection of innovation, capital and entrepreneurship.

Investors are taking risks on entrepreneurs like never before and high growth companies are emerging. Find out what’s driving these massive changes and learn how to get involved. Engage in meaningful conversations to enable new possibilities.

 

Patent Seekers recently launched an innovative analysis designed to help entrepreneurs and investors make key product, market and investment decisions.

StartPoint© is the latest ground-breaking advancement in market research and competitive intelligence using the power of patent data and market analysis.

StartPoint© is an affordable solution to help guide you through your innovation journey, provide you with a competitive edge and importantly help make your invention more attractive to investment.

Christian and a team of researchers designed StartPoint© with Entrepreneurs and Investors in mind. Please feel free to contact Christian if you would like to learn more.

Christian Hartmann
Christian Hartmann – Head of Business Development

Christian Hartmann is the Head of Business Development for North America. He regularly advises clients on the use of Intellectual Property search and analysis to support their innovation journey.

Further details on the Global Capital Summit can be found here.

Two IPs in a Pod Discuss Patent Searching with Patent Seekers

Two IPs In a Pod is an award winning podcast by the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA). Hosted by Lee Davies and Gwilym Roberts they talk to experts in the field of Intellectual Property (IP). In the latest episode we were lucky enough to be invited to discuss our IP services.

Two IPs in a Pod

 

Listen in to Two IPs in a Pod to find out how our IP search services benefits our clients worldwide.

Tim Parry is the Business and Finance Director for Patent Seekers.

Patent Seekers are experts in providing Patentability, Freedom To Operate (FTO)Patent BustingState of the ArtPatent Landscape and Mapping searches. Covering all technology areas we work with clients to provide a flexible service that can be customised to the way you work, your exact research outcomes and your budgetary requirements. Our clients include patent, design and trade mark attorneys, corporate IP departments, entrepreneurs and inventors. Each use our services in different ways to maximise savings on time and money without compromising on quality.

 

 

Dublin IP and R&D Summit 2022

The Dublin IP and R&D Summit 2022 returns this month after a two year break. As sponsors and exhibitors we’re looking forward to discussing our IP search services. In particular, how we can support companies with their research and development plans.

The 2 day summit kicks off on 23rd March 2022 with an IP Commercialisation Workshop delivered by Mathys & Squire Consulting Ltd. The workshop will go through all aspects of the IP lifecycle.  Thereby, ensuring delegates leave with a greater sense of confidence in managing and obtaining value from their IP and intangible assets.

Day 2 is chaired by Joe Doyle of Enterprise Ireland. It continues with an interactive IP and R&D conference consisting of two streams of discussions. Both looking at the most contemporary trends in the world of innovation with heated panel discussions and standalone presentations from IP and R&D professionals at the top of their game. The streams share a common networking and exhibition space. Innovation professionals will interact and exchange experiences across these two interconnected verticals in the economy of innovation.

Full details of the agenda and how to sign up can be found here.

Timothy Parry, Director at Patent Seekers will be showcasing StartPoint a new service aimed at Inventors, Entrepreneurs and Start-Ups. In addition, we will be demonstrating PatWorld® as well discussing our other search services including Freedom to Operate, and Invalidity. If you’d like to organise a meeting with Tim please email timothyparry@patentseekers.com

PatWorld® is a business intelligence software and searchable patent database. It allows you to quickly gather, filter, view and analyse worldwide patent information. Competitively priced the database includes many advanced features as standard. Speak to Tim about a free trial of PatWorld. If you’d like to sign up for a demo for you and your team click here.

Tim Parry is the Business and Finace Director for Patent Seekers. timothyparry@patentseekers.com

If you enjoy our content here, you’ll love the stuff we share on LinkedIn, follow us now.

Patent Seekers are experts in providing Patentability, Freedom To Operate (FTO), Patent Busting, State of the Art, Patent Landscape and Mapping searches. Need help in deciding which search you need? Check out our article on selecting the correct patent search!

 

Working with us – Current Vacancies

Patent Analysts

(Remote Working Available)

Would you like to work with some of the most innovative companies in the world as they create cutting edge technology? 

Patent Seekers are seeking several highly motivated, high achieving individuals with:

  • Physics, Engineering and/or Computer Sciences/Software background capable of understanding complex technologies, to join our Physics/Mechanical Team.
  • Biological Science background to join our Biotech Team.

We are looking to recruit both trainee and experienced patent analysts to meet our expansion plans (Salary based on experience).

Benefits include: Remote working, Pension, Healthcare, Cinema and Gym passes.

This is a fast-paced industry, and we are looking to identify people who can support the search services we offer, these include:

  • Patentability/novelty
  • Patent and design busting/invalidity
  • Freedom to operate/infringement
  • State of the art, patent landscaping/mapping and competitor monitoring

Our teams of analysts (the largest in Europe) specialize in their technical areas, covering physics, mechanical, electrical/electronic, software, chemical, biological, pharmaceutical, consumer products and medical subject matter.

To apply for this role you will fulfil the following criteria:

  • A Science, Engineering or Biotech background and capable of understanding complex technologies with an Engineering, Physics or Biotech degree.
  • Thorough and methodical approach to research, data analysis and documentation
  • Independent, and intuitive while enjoying teamwork and cooperation
  • Good communication skills including fluency in written and spoken English

Employment type: Full time.

Interested?  Apply by email; send your CV to timothyparry@patentseekers.com 

A number of vacancies currently available. Closing date: 31 March 2022

 

Follow us on LinkedIn to keep up to date with future vacancies. 

 

 

Fashion, is it Cyclical?

Everyone’s heard the phrase “fashion is cyclical” but how much truth is there in this statement? In the run-up to 2022 Fashion Weeks in New York (11-16 Feb), London (18-22 Feb), Milan (22-28 Feb) and Paris (28 Feb – 8 Mar) we analyse the patent data to see if it translates over to intellectual property? And, by utilising patent data, we set about finding out “Is Fashion Cyclical”.

The theory

A fashion trend is typically when a style of clothing, type of fabric or colour scheme sees a rise in popularity, suddenly finding itself in the spotlight and featuring in the wardrobes of style icons everywhere. Over the years plenty of these trends have come and gone; see for example flared trousers, double denim, the mini skirt… there’s plenty of options to choose from.

And yet, no matter how embarrassing some of these may seem in hindsight, a lot of fashion fads find a resurgence in popularity after a period out of the public consciousness.

The idea of a Trend Cycle itself is nothing new and can be applied to everything from music, television and books to the broader concept of art itself.
There is a basic theory that suggests trends have a 20-year lifespan; the time it takes for something popular to lose public interest, before reaching a high level of popularity once again.

As is also known to people within the world of intellectual property; in most countries a granted patent has an enforceable term of 20 years.

By identifying and evaluating two fashion trends, we intended to see if this matching 20-year lifespan is purely coincidental, or if a trend cycle can be identified within the patent data.

Trend One: Shoulder Pads

The first trend we decided to look into is the 80’s staple, the shoulder pad.

Figure 1, below, shows the filing history of shoulder pads related patents from 1980 to 2020. This chart was generated by analysis of the CPC classification A41D27/26: Shoulder-pads; Hip-pads; Bustles. The special rules of this classification state that it includes only shaping pads, not protection pads; making it a good match for this trend.

Figure 1: Earliest Priority Year vs Number of Patent Families

The data set contains a relatively small number annual filings, indicating that this doesn’t seem to be a particularly technologically innovative area. The filings appear to follow a pattern, with a small peak witnessed towards the end of the 1980’s, before dipping slightly to rise to a defined peak in 2001. This peak in filings remains at a near consistent high until 2007, after which filings appear to decline once more.

Viewing this data through the lens of the 20-year Trend Cycle, we can see a near perfect symmetry. Taking 2017 to be the low point that marks the middle of a cycle, we can look back at the previous 20 years, whilst also making a prediction for the future.

Looking back half a cycle to 2007, we can see this year is marked by a significant peak in filings, signifying the end point of the near constant high level of filings starting in 2001. Following the Trend Cycle to its beginning we would expect to see 2007 as the corresponding dip in filings; this is not the case, however the nearby low of 1991 may be able to be seen as the partner to 2017’s lull in filings, making this a 26 rather than 20-year cycle.

Based on this apparent cycle, we could expect to see shoulder pads making their inevitable comeback around 2027.

Trend Two: Bejewelling

From rhinestones to diamonds, on trousers or jackets, the second trend we chose to analyse is the versatile treatment of fabrics with jewelled materials.

Figure 2, below, shows the filing history of the fixation of particulate material to fabrics from 1980 to 2020. This chart was generated by analysis of the CPC classification D06Q1/10, which relates to decorating textiles by fixation of particulate matter.

Figure 2: Earliest Priority Year vs Number of Patent Families

These filings also appear to follow a cyclical pattern, although prior to 2000 the number of filings appears nearly insignificant to contribute to analysis.

Working in a similar manner as for shoulder pads, we can attempt to view these results in the terms of the 20-year Trend Cycle. 2016 stands out as the defining peak, containing around twice as many filings as any other year. Following backwards 10 years to 2006 we can see that this year does represent a dip in the near continual growth the filings had seen previously, if only a minor one. This could be due to the consistently minimal number of applications prior to 2000, which doesn’t allow for a defined analysis of any trends before this point.

Assuming this perceived dip in 2006 is true, we should therefore be able to assume the current decline in filings should continue until 2026. Which means that, unfortunately for fans of rhinestones, we may not expect this trend to surface again until 2036.

Conclusion – Fashion, is it Cyclical?

Fashion is forever moving forward, with recent years seeing the industry take a more active role in seeking environmental solutions. How much of what the industry produces is patented, or even could be, is an interesting question that may pose no definitive answer. However, within this short analysis, we have attempted to highlight areas of the fashion industry that can be clearly seen within intellectual property.

Both shoulder pads and the fixing of particulate matter on fabrics appear to show cycles in the number of yearly filings they see. These peaks and troughs may look inconspicuous, however when viewed in light of the 20-year Trend Cycle, a clear pattern does start to emerge.

However, this apparent cycle may also be related to the patent cliff; where following a patents expiry the innovation enters the public domain. In relation to fashion, this may be a time when it becomes assessable for the public to adopt a fashion that was previously protected by its patents, leading to the increase in popularity that could then see another wave of patent applications in this particular area, capitalising on the popularity.

In conclusion it is clear to see that the highlighted fashion styles undergo oscillations in the amount of annual filings, yet it is difficult to be certain if this relates directly to the trend lifecycle itself, or another factor such as the patent cliff. Based on the observed data however, we can always keep an eye on 2027 to watch for the return of a new wave of shoulder pad inventions and hopefully find our answer!

Article by Daniel Di Francesco, a Senior Patent Analyst at Patent Seekers. He is an expert in undertaking FTO, Patentability and Invalidity searches, covering all types of subject matter with specialism in the chemical field.

 

If you enjoy our content here, you’ll love the stuff we share on LinkedIn, follow us now. 

Patent Seekers are experts in providing Patentability, Freedom To Operate (FTO), Patent Busting, State of the Art, Patent Landscape and Mapping searches. Need help in deciding which search you need? Check out our article on selecting the correct patent search!

Digital Future Food Tech Conference London

Christian Hartmann, from our Toronto office attended the Future Food Tech Virtual Conference at the end of September 2021. Hosted in London but attended Digitally Christian was able to check out the latest innovations in food and food technologies.

https://futurefoodtechlondon.com/

The conference brought together food brand executives, investors and entrepreneurs from around the globe. Including from the health, nutrition and alternative proteins sectors.

With a focus on the Investors and Entrepreneurs pitching their technologies and products there were a number of exciting innovations on display.

In particular, The Gone in 60 Seconds: Start-Up Showcase, a pitch session for start-ups who had one minute to pitch their products demonstrated the importance of having a well researched and compelling narrative.

Are you a start-up with an interesting idea? If so, ask us about StartPoint©, a product designed for Entrepreneurs preparing to get their product or solution in front of investors and advisors. We’ll be launching StartPoint© in the coming weeks. Follow our LinkedIn page for details of the launch.

Questions? Why not Connect with Christian on LinkedIn to get more details on how we can help.

Headshot of Christian Hartmann - Head of Business Development for Patent Seekers
Christian Hartmann – Head of Business Development

Do you understand IP?

Do you understand IP? For some start-up companies and inventors Intellectual Property (IP) can be an unknown commodity. Having a basic understanding can help to inform business decisions and ensure you are able to support your innovation going forward. This could include approaching the relevant experts including intellectual property researchers such as Patent Seekers and/or patent, design or trademark attorneys for guidance as needed*.

With this in mind we were recently asked if there were any questions that newcomers to IP often ask. There are many, and so we asked Sue Leslie also relatively new to both IP and Patent Seekers, to develop an article answering some of these questions, including:

  • Should I keep my invention secret?
  • What is a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA)?
  • Can I carry out my own prior art search?

Developed from a newcomers’ perspective we hope it answers many of the questions people new to IP may face.

Do you understand IP? You can read the full article in the latest addition of The Global IP Matrix.

For further information on Patent Seekers services including patent, design and trademark searching please check out our Services page.

* For legal advice we recomend you speak to an attorney. Please see our Directory of Patent Attorneys for details of attorneys in your area.

Sue Leslie works as part of our Marketing and Business Development team, based in the UK but supporting development worldwide. Why not reach out on LinkedIn and grow your connections?

If you enjoy our content here, you’ll love the stuff we share on LinkedIn, follow us now.