When consumers think of “tech” companies, Apple, HP, Cisco, Microsoft, Samsung, and many other technology giants come to mind. While all of these organizations are clearly innovators, they do not, even when combined, account for the majority of innovation in the United States. The vast majority of innovation occurs in small companies, many of which have fewer than 10 employees. Small, innovative companies live to create new technology. They are passionate about discovery, research, development, and modernization.
U.S. Patent 10,000,000 (ten million!) was issued on Tuesday, June 19, 2018. As stated in a recent article from Law360, it took just a little over three years for the USPTO to grant one million new patents. By comparison it took 200 years to get to patent number five million and, if the trend continues, number 11 million is less than three years away. Every year the number of patent applications filed and the number of patents granted grows.
To practice as an intellectual property (IP) attorney means to focus on the intersection of technology, business and law. Mike Martensen arms his clients with a competitive advantage in IP by falling back to basic underlying themes of attention to detail, dedication to excellence and discipline.
Every small business should be aware of the Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) program of the Small Business Administration (SBA). Each year, various government agencies provide research grants for projects to solve technical problems facing that agency.
Obtaining a patent is complex and expensive. Moreover, the process has recently come under attack and court cases have caused startups to question the ROI of seeking patent protection for their innovations. But patents continue to be a vital, if not critical, phase of ensuring a startup’s success.