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  5. Call for Applicants for the New Program for Support Involving Intellectual Property Finance Targeting Regional Financial Institutes and Other Entities

Call for Applicants for the New Program for Support Involving Intellectual Property Finance Targeting Regional Financial Institutes and Other Entities

Provision of new measures under the program mainly for supporting main businesses of SMEs

July 1, 2019

The Japan Patent Office (JPO) has been advancing efforts to encourage regional financial institutes and other entities* to support their client companies in developing business management expertise involving intellectual property, based on an approach which is called “IP finance.” As part of such efforts, on July 1, 2019, the JPO will start a call for applicants for a new support program in which such institutes provide their services to companies, such as providing proposals for IP-related business plan.

1. Outline of the new support measures

The JPO has been providing support measures to encourage regional financial institutes and other entities to comprehend the business of their client companies from the aspect of IP, including providing companies with assessments of IP-related business plan. In addition to these measures, the JPO decided to create a new program and it hereby announces that on July 1, 2019, it will start a call for applicants for the following additional support measures under the program.

*Note: The term “regional financial institutes and other entities” means: regional financial institutes and venture capital firms operating within the areas of coverage of regional financial institutes.

(1) Preparation of IP-related business proposals

Under the original support measures, financial institutes prepare assessments of IP-related businesses and submit them to their client SMEs, mainly for the purpose of enhancing their own comprehension of the SMEs’ business operations. In the FY2019 program, in addition to such assessments, financial institutes will prepare a proposal for IP-related business that contains a report which focuses on challenges that SMEs are facing in their business operations, which explains IP-related solutions to resolving those challenges.

(2) Preparation of assessments and proposals for IP-related businesses targeting companies that have not yet made use of IP

Under the original support measures, efforts by financial institutes to prepare assessments on IP-related businesses only targeted SMEs with patent and other IP rights. In the FY2019 program, financial institutes will prepare both assessments and proposals for IP-related business for SMEs even if they have no IP. Through this approach, financial institutes will be able to comprehend the business operations of target SMEs, or support SMEs’ main businesses by focusing on such SMEs’ unique creativity, knowhow and other advantages.

2. Outline of the call

The JPO will start a call for applicants for three separate initiatives (called “courses”): [i] assessment of SMEs’ business potential, [ii] measure mainly emphasizing support for SMEs main business operations and [iii] measures tailored to specific demands, in which the JPO will adjust support measures based on the requests from regional institutes or other entities. To apply for the FY2019 program, please select one of these initiatives based on the specific circumstances of client companies and file an application form for each initiative (“course”).

The JPO will stop accepting applications once their desired number of applicants has been reached, so early apply at the earliest date possible.

For more information and how to apply, visit the JPO’s portal website for IP finance as below:

Division in Charge

Information Dissemination and Policy Promotion Division, Japan Patent Office