Patent (or utility model) protection abroad allows you to enjoy an important competitive advantage in your export markets. Companies that have adequately protected their inventions abroad have a range of options for exporting their innovative products that may not be available otherwise. These options include:
- Producing the good domestically and exporting the protected good directly or through intermediaries, knowing that no other company will be able to legally produce, sell or exploit the same product in the selected market without your authorization (and that most patent laws no longer allow, in accordance with international obligations of the country, to issue non-voluntary licenses on the ground that the protected goods are not produced locally in the country of export destination).
- Licensing the invention to a foreign firm that will manufacture the product locally, in exchange for a lump-sum payment and/or royalty fees (see Licensing of Intellectual Property; a Vital Component of the Business Strategy of Your SME).
- Setting up joint ventures with other firms for manufacturing and/or commercialization of the product in the selected foreign markets.
Depending on your strategy your enterprise will earn additional revenues either through direct sales of the product or through fees and/or royalties from a licensee. (see "Overview of Contractual Agreements for the Transfer of Technology [PDF] and IP Licensing: Reaping the Benefits [PDF]