5 Biggest Intellectual Property Mistakes UAE Startups Commit

Running a startup is a daunting task, especially in the early stages, when the funding is scarce. While focussing on attracting more customers and investors, startups often tend to ignore the importance of protecting IP assets. However, entrepreneurs often fail to understand that conducting UAE trademark registration is the real key to attract more customers and investors. Ignoring the power of trademarks is not the only mistake that startups commit when it comes to managing IP assets.

Related: 5 Things Brands Must Ensure While Making an Investment in Trademarks

There are more, and the biggest five of such errors are listed below:

1. Taking a Do It Yourself Approach

Most startups at its infancy stage take a lackadaisical approach towards IP citing the scarcity of funding. Entrepreneurs at the helm may be competent in their respective field of knowledge but lack awareness of protecting their trademarks and other IP assets. Startups with fewer resources operate on a ‘Do It Yourself’ approach in almost all the tasks. But is a DIY approach feasible for IP protection? No. Entrepreneurs should take consultation from the best trademark agents in Dubai right from the go. The trademark attorneys can advise the startup owners about the assets they should protect through trademark registration in the UAE. In most cases, it would be a logo, brand name or design that requires immediate protection.

2. Jumping into Water Ignoring Standard Practices

Some entrepreneurs decide to get their trademarks registered in the UAE without having a proper idea of the procedure and the law. As far as trademark registration in the UAE is concerned, the startups should ensure that a proper trademark search is conducted. Conducting a trademark search in the UAE is the best possible way to ensure that the proposed trademark is not in conflict with other registered marks.

Even though trademark search in the UAE is not a mandatory requirement, it keeps the brand owners on the safer side. Knowledge about standard procedures such as trademark watch also helps the entrepreneurs avoid being copied by the competitors. Trademark watch services in the UAE will alert the brand owners if a competitor has created a confusingly similar trademark.

3. Failure to Implement Strong IP Strategy

Every startup makes robust strategies in almost all kinds of aspects such as business plans to acquire investments, marketing strategy, recruitment plans, and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) plans. However, many entrepreneurs are least concerned about developing a strong IP strategy and implementing it. One plausible reason for ignoring the IP strategy could be the business owners’ eagerness to get their products into the market quickly.

Naturally, all their energy goes into commercialising the products instead of identifying and securing IP assets. Also, they forget the fact that branding is the cornerstone of marketing strategy, and trademark registration is the key to building a strong brand identity in the UAE. Without proper trademark protection, the entrepreneurs put their products at a higher risk from competitors. All the marketing efforts will go wasted without a proper IP strategy in place.

Also read: 5 Things Brands Should Consider When it Comes to Their Trademark Strategy

4. Overlooking the IP Rights of Other Parties

So far, the focus of discussion was on protecting one’s own IP rights. However, care should be taken to avoid infringing the rights of others, including the competitors. Even those who shy away from registering their trademarks in the UAE can infringe others’ rights. For example, a startup may be using a brand name without registering it at the trademark office. However, a similar brand name may be in existence with adequate IP protection.

Bonus read: How to Stop Trademark Infringement in the UAE With Anti-counterfeit Measures During COVID-19 Era

Infringement proceedings are time-consuming and cost the companies a great amount of money. Also, engaging in a trademark dispute with a big brand doesn’t augur well for a startup which is only at its infancy. Brand wars can be nasty for the reputation of the company, which will force the customers to stop trusting the brand. Trademark agents in Dubai can assist the startups in eliminating the risks of trademark infringement.

5. Staying Away from Registration Due to Costs

Many entrepreneurs think that the UAE trademark registration cost is too high, and not worth the effort. However, shying away from registering trademarks in the UAE due to the cost factor would only lead to further loss of money in the future. Startups with no proper IP strategy will eventually find themselves entangled in trademark disputes with well-known brands. Furthermore, the Ministry of Economy has substantially reduced the cost of trademark registration in the UAE. Trademark agents in the UAE will assist the brand owners in clearing the air on the costs associated with various trademark services.

Why Should You Consult with Trademark Agents in Dubai, UAE?

Startups in the early stages consider ignoring the basic tenets of IP as most of the entrepreneurs are ill-informed about vital processes like trademark registration in the UAE. Big brands invest millions in securing their brand identity, but startups often think IP protection is not worth the money. The lack of proper knowledge about IP often leads to mistakes that hurt the brand identity of the startups. Many of these mistakes may cause a negative impact later on but seeking advice from the best trademark agents in Dubai, such as Jitendra Intellectual Property (JIP) can create a big difference.

JIP provides reliable services including trademark registration, trademark search, trademark watch and administrative action against fake goods. JIP is one of the most experienced IP firms in Dubai that provides robust consultation on trademark opposition and disputes as well. JIP’s trademark services are not restricted to the UAE; brand owners can enjoy trademark protection across other GCC countries as well.

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