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EUIPO-WIPO IP Management Clinic – Furniture

April 11, 2024

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)’s IP for Business Division and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) together with European Furniture Industries Confederation (EFIC) present the 2024 Intellectual Property Management Clinic – Furniture.

Are you an entrepreneur or a small- or medium-sized enterprise (SME) working in the furniture sector? Do you need support to improve your business and (IP) strategies?

Applications are now closed


WIPO, the EUIPO and EFIC are joining forces to help EU SMEs in developing solutions for the furniture industry.

IP is present in multiple aspects of furniture design and production. The visual appearance of individual pieces of furniture are protectable by unregistered and registered designs; protection that also extends to packaging, style and graphics. New technical innovations incorporated to make items function can also be protected by patents or trade secrets. Your websites or catalogues and new software are protected by copyright, and your company’s name, logo and slogan can be protected through trade marks.

Today, manufacturing and retail networks often stretch over countries and continents. This makes it even more important to ensure your IP assets are protected in each of them.

The IP Management Clinic is a programme that aims to help companies better utilise IP as part of their business strategies.

Why participate?

Companies selected to participate in the IP Management Clinic will benefit from a free programme of activities spread over 5 months, specifically designed to address their IP management needs, as determined in the application process. They will receive advice on IP management strategies and guidance on how the IP system can make their products or services more competitive in today’s market, benefiting from IP protection and its competitive advantage.

The participants will have a clear understanding of the importance of protecting their IP assets and will be guided on managing and leveraging these IP rights in the different phases of their business journey. They will also learn how to enforce their rights against unlawful use.

During the 5-month programme, companies can expect to participate in the following.

  • Three personalised, one-on-one mentoring sessions with renowned IP experts with knowledge of the furniture sector;
  • Three online workshops covering a range of business- and IP-related topics designed to correspond to the specific needs of participating companies, including:
    • IP intelligence and audit;
    • branding and marketing;
    • IP strategy and IP portfolio management;
    • IP ownership and collaboration in design;
    • advice on how to identify opportunities to use their IP to generate income and value;
    • advice on IP issues in overseas markets;
    • IP valuation and financing;
    • IP risk mitigation and enforcement;
  • Peer-to-peer networking opportunities among participating companies in the clinic.
  • Selected companies may participate in the final event to be held in Alicante, Spain, on 8 October 2024 (the programme covers travel costs).

The anticipated time dedication for participants during this period is estimated at between 10 to 15 hours each.

Who can apply?

To participate, companies must meet the following criteria:

  • be an SME (less than 50 million turnover and 250 employees);
  • be based in an EU Member State;
  • own a product or service that is ready to be commercialised in the market and be potentially or already protected by IP rights;
  • have an entrepreneurial team (of at least two people);
  • the entrepreneurial team must have a good command of English.

Deadline and schedule

To participate, applicants must complete the questionnaire by 10 May. WIPO, the EUIPO and EFIC will assess applications and select a limited number of companies. The selection announcement and programme launch will take place in May.

To ensure a successful IP Management Clinic, the selected companies will be expected to actively participate in the programme (join online workshops, provide non-confidential information on their product or technology and IP, provide feedback after the clinic with a time dedication estimated at between 10 and 15 hours).