Protecting intellectual property rights can present a classic David versus Goliath scenario for many small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). (Photo: ar130405/Adobe Stock) Protecting intellectual property rights can present a classic David versus Goliath scenario for many small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). (Photo: ar130405/Adobe Stock)

Intellectual property (IP) represents major value to most businesses today. Patents, trademarks, trade secrets, copyright and registered designs are all valuable commodities, regardless of the industry sector involved. But with that value comes great challenges — particularly for smaller businesses.

For an owner of IP assets, one major challenge is the time taken to develop their own IP together with the cost of registration and maintenance of rights, which is significant. While the registration of an IP asset theoretically puts small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) on equal footing with a large corporation, this doesn’t often hold true when it comes to enforcing their rights against infringers. The cost, the time and the stress can be prohibitive.

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