The Intellectual Property (IP) landscape is changing as innovation continues to evolve in form from less physical items to more digital expressions where human concepts are captured in mathematical formats. As the use of the internet continues to expand, these digital forms of value will gain larger shares of economic activity leading to new and unexpected strategies for IP protection. Startups must embrace this evolution and use it to create broad and sustainable competitive advantages creating valuable and investable companies.

Every digital startup founder must ask themselves these 6 critical IP questions:

  1. Do you really need a patent for your software-related invention? Think twice before preparing a patent application.
  2. What do you wish to protect from your competitors? Identify the core part of your innovation.
  3. Is your innovation patentable? Not all types of software-related innovation can enjoy patent protection.
  4. Do you need to protect your innovation in international markets? Patentability requirements are not always the same in each country.
  5. Can you effectively use trade secrets to protect algorithms and programs versus revealing the innovations in a patent application?
  6. Can licensing the software or making it a standard create greater value than keeping it confidential?

A strong digital IP strategy can boost market share, increase value and mitigate risks for investors. Founders must develop their own strategy but be sure to have a strong IP legal resource on your team.

To learn more about how to carefully craft your IP strategy to create a competitive edge visit