Businesses around the world are currently facing some really tough operational choices on many fronts, and these can be especially difficult decisions for highly innovative businesses, who are in the midst of a breakthrough or on the way to launching a new product or service.

Although intellectual property (IP) (such as patents, trade marks, designs and copyright) might not be at the forefront of all business leaders’ minds as they steer their companies through the Covid-19 storm, it will certainly be a consideration for those at the forefront of innovation – losing sight of IP as a key driver for your business growth could spell trouble. That is because innovations in many fields are likely to be defined by work done over the weeks and months ahead. Indeed, a boom in innovation has been reported in the popular press in recent weeks (The Guardian – 24 May).

Naturally, there will be a need to take stock and prioritise – resources are not what they were for many businesses. But it is imperative to use the weeks and months ahead to carefully align your business’ shifting commercial goals with an effective approach to IP, or risk being left behind by innovative competitors.

To help you align your commercial goals with an effective approach to IP, Potter Clarkson has developed an easy-to-digest “Next 100 Days” guide, full of practical tips and actionable insights for your business to consider right now.  These tips are distilled down into a four-stage process to help your businesses emerge from the current crisis in the best position:

Review: how thoroughly and accurately you can crystallise your current IP position will ensure any subsequent actions you take have the maximum effect. So, we have included detailed information on how to conduct such a review.

Consolidate: prioritising key projects and rationalising the development pipeline.

Mitigate risk: putting measures in place to reduce the impact of potential threats.

Plan ahead: ensuring you can maximise new opportunities.

Our Next 100 Days free guide is available to download here. However, over a series of blog posts for UK SPA, I will go into more detail on each of the four stages of the guide and how they apply to science park businesses like yours.

Author Richard Wells, patent attorney at Potter Clarkson. If you have any IP questions you can email