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Singapore Launches IP Financing Scheme and First One-Stop IP Service Centre

Issued: April 11 2014

Singapore government official recently announced the roll-out of two new initiatives to help the country embrace IP at the official opening of IP 101, the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore’s (IPOS) new one-stop IP service centre.


A S$100 million IP Financing Scheme will be launched to support local businesses to use their granted patents as collaterals for bank loans. Targeted at IP-rich and asset-light companies burgeoning in the technology sector, the scheme will open a new avenue for innovative companies to access capital so as to grow and expand.


The second initiative, IP 101, is Singapore’s first one-stop IP service centre to support the country with IP. Located at Singapore’s art and culture foci at Bras Basah Road, IP 101 will offer a whole suite of IP products and services for innovators, creators, and businesses in Singapore. Services include IP registration, advisory, education, training, and outreach.


Announcing the launch of a new IP campaign, Indranee Rajah, senior minister of State for Law and Education said, “‘Embracing IP’ is purposefully couched to bring IP closer to innovators, creators, and businesses. ’Embracing IP’ comprises three key thrusts. They are ‘Enabling local businesses through IP’, ‘Growing Singapore-based businesses with IP’ and ‘Respecting and Caring with IP’.”


IP Financing Scheme – Turning creativity into gold


As part of the ‘Embracing IP’ campaign, the IP Financing Scheme is structured to catalyse local innovation with IP.


Eligible companies should be incorporated in Singapore and possess granted patents to serve as collateral. Companies may apply through selected participating financial institutions, which so far, comprise DBS Bank, OCBC Bank, and UOB. The banks will refer companies to seek the necessary valuation for the intellectual property. The loan will be risk-shared with the Singapore government. Participating financial institutions will be accepting applications for the IP Financing Scheme starting late Q2 2014.


Lim Chu Chong, head of the SME Banking at DBS Bank said, “A growing number of companies, especially SMEs, are paying greater emphasis to intellectual property. In the long run, IP assets will increasingly become a significant part of companies’ balance sheets compared to conventional tangible assets. Consequently, lending against such intangible assets, such as intellectual property, will become a more common practice for asset based lenders and commercial banks in Singapore. DBS is thankful to IPOS for inviting us to be part of this exciting new phase in commercial lending, and hope we can help many more SMEs grow together with us.”


Linus Goh, head of the Global Commercial Banking, OCBC Bank, said, “Singapore businesses are increasingly leveraging intellectual property to differentiate their businesses and fuel their growth. The newly-launched IP Financing Scheme recognises the value of IPs deployed in businesses today and offers a new source of financing for businesses. This will ultimately encourage a stronger focus on innovation and IP development in businesses.”


Eric Tham, managing director and head at Group Commercial Banking, UOB said, “The entrepreneurial spirit runs deep in Singapore and the IP Financing Scheme will help more companies springboard to their next stage of growth. We welcome the opportunity to partner forward-looking home-grown businesses that will use their intellectual property assets to move up the value chain. This scheme gives Singaporean businesses a solid platform from which to grow and explore new business opportunities locally and overseas.”


IP 101 – One-stop IP service centre


IP 101, located at unit #01-01 of the Manulife Centre on Bras Basah Road, will be the one-stop IP service centre. It will provide facilities for over-the-counter filings of IP, reference check on prior registrations, IP journals and books. New IP services such as quick-and-free IP business and legal clinics will also be provided by business consultants and private legal practitioners respectively. In partnership with IP Academy, IP 101 will advise on the range of IP education and training for IP professionals. Lastly, IP 101 has partnered creators to help raise respect for IP through public outreach initiatives.


“IP 101 will be the focal point for creators, innovators and businesses to Embrace Intellectual Property,” said Tan Yih San, chief executive of IPOS. ”The launch of the IP Financing Scheme marks a new chapter in the Singapore’s IP ecosystem. We are encouraged by the strong support from many Singaporeans to co-create a better Singapore with ideas and intellectual property.”


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