Fostering innovation and intellectual property

Fostering innovation and intellectual property

Brand manufacturers seek an effective protection of the investment in their brands and in innovation through the efficient administration and enforcement of intellectual property rights.

In an environment of vigorous competition, AIM member companies are constantly innovating in a vast range of consumer products.

Research shows that one euro invested in R&D in the brands industry creates twice as much added value as in the non-branded industry (for details, see PIMS study from 2000 in "Brand research" section of this website).

To sustain high levels of investment in R&D and prevent consumer confusion, brand manufacturers depend on efficient and effective administration and enforcement of intellectual property rights and fair market conditions.

This includes the availability of well-functioning trade mark registration and enforcement procedures, at reasonable cost and in timely fashion.

The recently published proposals to amend EU trade mark legislation present a key opportunity to improve the current system, taking full account of right holders' needs for harmonised practices and efficient processes: AIM has been fully involved in all debates leading to these proposals and will continue to actively work with the institutions during the legislative process.

AIM, as an Observer to the Administrative Board at the European Trade Marks Office and founder member of the EU Observatory on Infringements of IPRs, is closely involved in practical solution-building, not just for trade mark administration but also for enforcement. In that capacity we will continue to coordinate the coalition that is the AIM Anti-Counterfeiting Committee pushing for effective implementation of the new Customs Regulation, the need for customs officers to have the legal right to detain consignments in transit suspected of infringing IPRs, the importance of harmonised, highest common denominator implementation of the Enforcement Directive and promoting best practices throughout the EU and with our trading partners.

Given the importance of branding online, it is also essential that the Internet domain name governing body ICANN appreciates the needs for rights protection mechanisms across all domain names, not least within the new generic top level domain programme.

Speech Paul Polman, CEO Unilever, at the Intellectual Property Summit 2014

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