Intellectual Property Rights Services

Your trademarks and patents are valuable assets to you and they need protecting and managing.

Our dedicated IP team will take over the administrative burden to ensure your rights are registered, managed and protected.

Our services include:

  • Setting up structures to hold and manage IP
  • Licensing and distributing IP
  • Coordinating IP protection and registration
  • Making introductions to research and development funding

To discuss our Intellectual Property rights services further, please contact us.

Intellectual property rights including registration, protection and defense

Commercial law solutions

Globalization, continually changing legal regulations and technological advancements have increased the complexity of business operations. As a result, legal and compliance risks in the area of intellectual property (IP) rights need to be even more diligently managed than ever before.

Our legal team assists businesses with the handling of all IP related matters, in particular the registration of trademarks, drafting of license agreements and representation before authorities. Additionally, we provide trademark and other IP right protection services either in court or in alternative dispute resolution forums.

Our legal team combines a broad and deep base of knowledge and experience in local legislation with global reach and capabilities to provide cross-jurisdiction legal advice to businesses

What is Intellectual Property?

Intellectual property (IP) refers to creations of the mind, such as inventions; literary and artistic works; designs; and symbols, names and images used in commerce.

IP is protected in law by, for example, patents, copyright and trademarks, which enable people to earn recognition or financial benefit from what they invent or create. By striking the right balance between the interests of innovators and the wider public interest, the IP system aims to foster an environment in which creativity and innovation can flourish.

Types of intellectual property

Copyright is a legal term used to describe the rights that creators have over their literary and artistic works. Works covered by copyright range from books, music, paintings, sculpture and films, to computer programs, databases, advertisements, maps and technical drawings.


A patent is an exclusive right granted for an invention. Generally speaking, a patent provides the patent owner with the right to decide how – or whether – the invention can be used by others. In exchange for this right, the patent owner makes technical information about the invention publicly available in the published patent document.

(image: WIPO/Gen a)

A trademark is a sign capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one enterprise from those of other enterprises. Trademarks date back to ancient times when craftsmen used to put their signature or “mark” on their products.

(image: courtesy of mihail stamati)
Industrial designs

An industrial design constitutes the ornamental or aesthetic aspect of an article. A design may consist of three-dimensional features, such as the shape or surface of an article, or of two-dimensional features, such as patterns, lines or color.

Geographical indications

Geographical indications and appellations of origin are signs used on goods that have a specific geographical origin and possess qualities, a reputation or characteristics that are essentially attributable to that place of origin. Most commonly, a geographical indication includes the name of the place of origin of the goods.

Patent topics and issues

Patents are not just abstract concepts; they play an invaluable, practical role in everyday life. By rewarding ideas, patents encourage the development of innovations and new technologies in every field.

(Photo: breakthrough breast cancer)
Biotech and genes

To what extent are biotechnology processes and products patentable? How do gene patents affect medical care and gene testing research and development? Opinions are divided.

Computer programs

Software producers need protection against unauthorized copying in order to recoup their investments, but using patents for this raises questions.


While nanotechnology innovations appear generally suitable for patent protection, certain issues require further consideration.

Patents, technology and development

One of the main functions of the patent system is to foster technological innovation by providing an incentive for research and development.  The patent system also works to diseminate technical information and promote technology transfer.

Find out more about the various ways in which WIPO engages in technology and knowledge transfer.

Inventor Assistance Program (IAP)

The Inventor Assistance Program matches developing country inventors and small businesses with limited financial means with patent attorneys, who provide pro bono legal assistance to secure patent protection.

TISC discussion group. (Photo: Courtesy of OMPIC)
Technology and Innovation Support Centers (TISCs)

Our Technology and Innovation Support Center (TISC) program gives innovators in developing countries access to high quality technology information and related services to help them create, protect, and manage intellectual property rights.

Patent Expert Issues: Computer Programs and Business Methods

Computer technology penetrates nearly all areas of our life, not only in business environments but also in daily surroundings. But a computer cannot operate without instructions. These instructions, so-called computer programs or software, may be incorporated in the computer or any other apparatus, but are often stored, reproduced and distributed on portable media such as CD-ROMs or transmitted on-line.

Once created, it is often possible to reproduce software easily at very low cost, and in unlimited quantities. Although copyright protection is available for “literal expressions” of software, it does not protect the “concept” behind the software, which often is a core part of its commercial value. Since such concepts frequently fulfil technical functions, such as controlling machines or processing data, the patent system is often available to protect software-related inventions that involve such technical functions.

Generally, several approaches have been taken in protecting software by means of patents. While some countries grant patents for all types of software, computer programs are expressly excluded from patentable subject matter in many countries. However, in many of those latter countries, computer programs are only not patentable “as such” thus making it possible to obtain patent protection for computer program-related inventions with a technical character. As justification for excluding software from patent protection, it is often said that innovation in this field typically involves cumulative, sequential development and re-use of others’ work, and that the need to preserve interoperability between programs, systems, and network components does not fit with the mechanisms of the patent system because the range of options available to the second-comer may be constrained. On the other hand, some argue that patent protection of computer software is necessary in order to provide adequate incentive for investment in this field and to support innovation in various technological areas, which are increasingly developing hand-in-hand with computer technology.

Business methods

In recent years, another similar issue has arisen: namely the question of the patentability of business methods. Traditionally, business methods have been either in the public domain or protected under trade secret law. Today, however, information technology offers possibilities for new business models, using information technology as a tool for processing and transmitting various data, such as technical, commercial and financial data. Due to the high economic stakes associated with such new business methods and the expansion of e-commerce in our society, the debate on the feasibility of patenting business methods has continued at various fora.


A patent is a powerful business tool, allowing inventors/companies to gain valuable exclusivity over a new product or process. In developing countries however, few local inventors venture into the world of patents and those who do so without legal support often fail at the first steps due to formal errors. Through the Inventor Assistance Program, inventors working in any technological field can benefit from expert support to help them access and potentially profit from the patent system.