SMEs can now buy or sell IP rights online

Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in India will now be able to buy or sell their intellectual Property (IP) rights with the help of India's first online IPR Exchange, which was launched in New Delhi on Thursday.

This online IPR Exchange has been setup by industry body Federation of Indian Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (FISME) with support from the British High Commission.

"The whole idea initially is to bring about awareness. This is an important initiative where SMEs can buy and sell intellectual property. If you see the number of patents which are being generated in other countries now, including China, and if you compare that with India then we are way behind," MSME Secretary, Madhav Lal said in his address after the launch of the exchange.

He said in a 30 million strong sector in a billion strong country, "We need initiatives that could be scaled up to make appreciable impact."

This online IPR Exchange, the first in India, not only offers a platform to buy or sell IPRs, but would also provide e-vaults duly protected through secure passwords for safe storage of their unique invention, designs, trademark or other creations.

It would also help SMEs to assess valuation of their IPRs through a specialised service.

In his message, FISME President, D Gandhikumar said, "A business case - evaluating a decision from the perspective of profitability, demands that for the protected Intellectual Property to be bought, sold, assigned or transferred like any other physical property, its value ought to be ascertained through a market-based mechanism. The proposed IPR exchange aims to do just that."

Gandhikumar said FISME is taking more initiatives in the area of IPR. These include consultation programme in the industrial clusters for proprietary technologies and IP audit services.

When asked about the suggestions given by the MSME Ministry for Foreign Trade Policy (FTP), Madhav Lal told media, "We have brought issues related to export credit, easing of procedures, etc to the notice of Commerce Ministry."

The government likely to announce the annual FTP supplement on April 18, reports media.