Page 6: Conclusion
The balance sheet of most businesses still emphasises the value of physical assets such as buildings, plant and equipment. Yet typically, around 75% of a firm's value is in its intellectual property, such as knowledge, copyrights and brands (trade marks). The business writer Charles Handy calls it the 3Is - information, intelligence and ideas.
Many businesses are able to exploit their intellectual property but they need to be aware of the risks. Ideas could easily be copied and the whole basis of a new product could be lost. This is why the services of the Intellectual Property Office are so important.
The Intellectual Property Office offers innovators and creators protection for their new ideas and products, without which there would be less investment in innovation and brand development. It also enables future generation of new ideas.
Although protection of a patent remains in place for around 20 years to prevent direct copying, the knowledge content of patents is made public after 18 months. This stimulates further innovation and competition.