Ones to Watch in IP 2016
As the name suggests, PatentAxis specializes in patent law and provides highly innovative solutions for clients in Toronto, Canada and beyond. We got in touch with Jai Chatterjee, Director at PatentAxis Inc., to find out more.
First of all, can you provide an overview of what your company does? What has been your approach to patent prosecution? Experience shows that patent prosecution and analysis can present a steep and complex learning curve for many clients. As a result, PatentAxis is committed to providing services and support that allow its clients to fully embrace the patenting process. The firm handles the pursuit of patent protection on an international scale and provides patent portfolio management and strategic advice to help clients understand and navigate their patent landscape. Clients receive guidance that allow them to make informed practical choices at critical decision points so they can realise opportunities and thrive within the patenting arena. Particular emphasis is placed on client communication and fully understanding their goals and objectives so that each patent prosecution strategy and work product is uniquely suited to each client.
More specifically, what kind of patent services do you offer?
Since inception, PatentAxis has endeavoured to provide streamlined and practical solutions to clients trying to obtain patent protection. For Canadian clients, the firm provides a full-service international patent prosecution, and directs and manages patent protection and analysis for desired markets worldwide. As for non-Canadian clients, services include a focused approach to obtaining patent protection and patent analysis in Canada, prosecuting Canadian counterpart patent applications stemming from PCT International applications or priority applications filed in other countries.
What sort of clients does your company have?
PatentAxis Inc. is dedicated to providing high value service and achieving successful results for clients of all sizes and technology areas. Experience shows that innovation and impactful inventive ideas can originate from any source, and ranges from independent inventors to large corporations. The firm’s client roster reflects this belief with clients ranging from small companies to large universities. While a strict confidentiality policy prevents naming of clients, ultimately, the recruitment of any new client or new business from an existing client is considered a successful and significant event.
Tell us more about the philosophy behind your firm? What does PatentAxis stand for?
As I mentioned earlier, but feel is important to reiterate, clear communication underlies all aspects of PatentAxis Inc.’s business approach. Whether communications are with clients, with representatives of a patent office or with an associate in a foreign firm, clarity and practicality are always a focus. Decision points are clearly identified with practical solutions laid out and implications for time and cost explained. Alongside this approach, budgetary discipline stems from patent professionals having experience managing small businesses and personally relating to importance of adhering to corporate budgets. As a result, PatentAxis Inc. is able to provide estimates in advance of all work with fixed fee options available. In addition, total patent budget estimates for 6 to 12 months in advance can be provided to help clients stay prepared to absorb costs of the patenting process.
Strong client relations are a natural progression for PatentAxis. The firm recognizes that the entrepreneurial process requires coordination of multiple interacting parts and successful decisions by clients to take an idea through research and development to a recognised innovation in the market place. This process takes insight and dedication that commands respect and the firm is always keen to do its part to help and foster the process from a patent perspective.
As a seasoned professional in this arena, do you agree that more than ever before, intangible assets such as brands, know-how and reputation are of key importance to businesses? As you may already know, social media and a non-stop news reporting cycle have contributed to an increased public scrutiny of brands and corporate reputations. As a result, the immediacy of public commentary and its impact on brand awareness and reputation is evident. Less recognised but equally important is its internal impact on the corporate work force influencing critical human resource parameters such as morale, productivity, and retention rates. As such, optimised management of intangible assets such as brands, know-how and reputation are critical to successful business strategies. For many technology companies, development of intangible assets equals or surpasses the importance of tangible assets.
Should organisations ensure that they maximise the value of their IP assets while ensuring that such assets are adequately protected?
Technological know-how of a corporation is an accumulation of innovation, research and development, and knowledge spanning years if not decades of investments of time and money. Whether instruments of patents, trade secrets, copyright or other intellectual property rights are pursued, protection and leveraging of corporate home-grown technology are keys to maintaining a competitive advantage. Thus, organisations need to reassess and match IP strategies to changing business environments. For example, in the unfortunate occurrence of layoffs, consolidation and assessment of technological developments for potential patent protection should be conducted. In speaking more generally, a review of technological developments can be made to be a standard component of exit interviews. Similar considerations can apply to other incremental events in a business cycle, for example mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, franchising, and the like.
To what extent do business leaders need to create innovative means of developing, exploiting and safeguarding these assets and ensure that they seek the know-how and advice of leading specialists in this field?
In my view, corporate management should have protocols in place to ensure that technological developments are at least assessed for protection prior to any unintended release or loss to external elements as can happen with issues such as employee exits, acquisition discussions, and joint venture relationships, to name a few. IP professionals have often experienced many different scenarios and can be a very useful resource for providing practical approaches to minimise risks of unintended loss and/or maximising opportunities of leveraging technological developments. Moreover, regular audits of technology transfer and protection protocols with a relevant professional is prudent.
Lastly, can you tell us how your company stands out within your field of expertise in the rapidly growing and ever-changing field of IP?
PatentAxis Inc. stands ready to provide strategic advice whenever called upon by its clients, including on-site audits of technology development and patent protection programs. The firm maintains a tremendous respect for innovators, but at the same time does not shy away from critical comments to provide practical patentability assessment of proposed inventions. The firm has found that innovators are typically quite receptive to critical comments and are capable of integrating assessments into their research and development programs. Furthermore, innovators are often nimble and adaptable by nature and profit from clear and explicit patentability assessments to develop further inventive improvements to benefit chances of ultimately securing a patent.