A rare piece of good news for business has been revealed in figures released by IP Australia, which found trade mark applications have risen to pre-GFC levels.
Last financial year, Australian businesses made trade mark applications in a record 69,003 classes, demonstrating that local brands are expanding into more goods and services categories than in previous years.
Anecdotal evidence suggests trade mark applications are leading indicators of economic activity, because businesses generally apply for trade marks when they are about to launch a product or a new venture.
The rise in applications may also reflect a better understanding of intellectual property (IP), with a recent survey showing that 54 percent of SMEs rated themselves “somewhat aware” of IP, whilst the proportion of those “very aware” doubled from 15 percent to 32 percent.
IP Australia General Manager of Trade Marks and Designs Robyn Foster agrees with this sentiment.
“Your brand is an important business asset and can become the most valuable thing a business owns. Like physical assets, a brand needs protection and that’s where a registered trade mark is useful.”
“Registration provides a legal right for business to protect their brand and hard earned reputation.”