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IP Week @ SG 2022 announces initiatives for startups, SMEs, youth innovators

08 September 2022

IP Week @ SG 2022 announces initiatives for startups, SMEs, youth innovators

More avenues are now available for startups, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and the youth in Singapore to set them up on their journey to innovation via intellectual property.

At the September 6 opening ceremony for IP Week @ SG 2022, Edward Tong, Singapore's minister for culture, community & youth and second minister for law, announced three new initiatives that will provide startups, SMEs and youth innovators the resources they need to be able to innovate and secure protection for their IPs including patents and trademarks.

The first of these initiatives is IP Start, managed by Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) International. Under this program, Singapore-based accelerators and incubators including SGInnovate, Singapore Deep-Tech Alliance and Imagine H2O Asia will provide workspace, seed funding, mentoring, resources and training. The objective is to help startups integrate IP management at the early phase of their business. Enterprises can register for IP Start here.

To provide more information to startups, SMEs and youth innovators is the soon-to-be-launched Trade Secrets Guide for Enterprises. Jointly developed by IPOS, Action Community for Entrepreneurship, International Enterprise Singapore, Singapore Business Federation, Singapore Fintech Association and SGTech, the guide contains information on what trade secrets are, how they can be protected/ managed, case studies and a list of trade secrets tools available to enterprises.

The third initiative is the Singapore chapter of the Inventor Assistance Programme (IAP), a joint initiative between IPOS and the World Intellectual Property Organization. With the involvement of volunteer patent attorneys from the Association of Singapore Patent Attorneys, IAP will help youth in tertiary institutions navigate the patent system efficiently so they can focus on bringing their ideas to market. Young innovators or entrepreneurs can sign up for the IAP by setting up an account with WIPO here. IAP is expected to commence by the fourth quarter of 2022.

In his opening address at IP Week @ SG 2022 held at the Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre on September 6, Tong said: “IP provides us with a powerful, versatile tool to support and even facilitate innovation. At its most basic, all IP regimes allow innovators to stake a claim on their innovations. But as an IP ecosystem develops and becomes more sophisticated, it allows innovators to do more with that claim, beyond simply using it to prevent others from copying their innovation. For instance, IP facilitates collaborative research and development, because it allows the collaborators to meaningfully control the fruits of their collaboration. IP can also be used as a strategic tool for businesses.”

“SMEs play a critical role in the Singapore economy, accounting for 99 percent of all companies and employing 70 percent of the local force. Startups are also important engines of innovation, generating new ideas, products and services. To reap the full benefits of their innovations, they need to have the expertise and know-how to secure their IP rights. These initiatives will provide innovators with the resources to help them gain a competitive edge,” Tong added.

For more information on IP Week @ SG 2022, visit:

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