New IPOS entity to help Singapore firms take their intangible assets global

THE Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) has launched IPOS International - a new entity that will support the growth of businesses through the commercialisation of their intangible assets (IA) and intellectual property (IP), both in Singapore and globally. 

The announcement was made by Minister for Trade and Industry, Chan Chun Sing, at the opening ceremony of IP Week @ SG 2019 on Tuesday. 

Singapore's first Skills Framework for IP, a world first, was also launched at the two-day conference, which attracted more than 3,500 participants from over 45 countries.

Memoranda of understanding (MOU) with five other IP Offices and an overseas media organisation will be inked, bridging the innovation ecosystems with international communities, and supporting the translation of ideas and IP into products and services, IPOS noted in a press statement on Tuesday. 

IPOS International brings together over 100 specialists with strengths in IP strategy and management, patent search and analysis, as well as education and training. It will also provide customised programmes and advisory services tailored to specific business needs among other things. 

As a start, businesses can use Illuminate® for Enterprises, a free tool designed to help firms assess their IP management status. "In 10 minutes, businesses will receive key insights on potential IP gaps and risks, as well as tips and recommendations for further actions," IPOS explained. 

Companies may also tap IPOS' networks covering 90 per cent of global trade to expand globally through their IP and IA. "Together, IPOS and IPOS International will deliver value to enterprises and industries by building global networks with local and foreign innovation communities, and growing IP expertise and manpower for Singapore and beyond," IPOS noted. 

Daren Tang, chairman of IPOS International, said: "As Singapore's economy transforms, enterprises will increasingly turn to innovation to drive business growth. To support them on this challenging journey, we have decided to bring together over 100 of our IP experts under one roof to provide new solutions and tools for these enterprises.

"We will also work closely with partners in government and the private sector, in Singapore and overseas, to offer holistic solutions to innovative enterprises as they scale up into the region and beyond."

To support the growing demand for IP expertise and skills development, the Skills Framework for IP was also launched at the event on Tuesday. Essentially, the framework aims to raise the overall competencies of IP professionals, helping them identify career development pathways and the skills needed to succeed in roles requiring IP skills across the public and private sectors.

"Covering 11 job roles and 60 technical and general skills across five tracks – IP commercialisation, IP legal, IP management, IP strategy, and patent prosecution – the framework will support the Singapore innovation ecosystem in building a pool of competent and industry-ready IP professionals to support enterprises as they take their ideas and IP global," IPOS said. 

Some emerging skills identified include: business environment analysis, data visualisation, IP commercialisation and exploitation, as well as IP monetisation.

According to IPOS, the Skills Framework for IP supports jobseekers as they explore career opportunities, and helps companies design talent attraction, development and management plans.

The framework was jointly developed by IPOS, SkillsFuture Singapore and Workforce Singapore, together with employers, industry associations as well as education and training providers.