The Coming Economic Downturn: How it will affect inventors and what they can do

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The challenges facing inventors in the UK such as sharply reduced demand for goods and services, reduced credit, cautious investment climate, rising costs and increasing competition from BRICs …

The challenges facing inventors in the UK such as sharply reduced demand for goods and services, reduced credit, cautious investment climate, rising costs and increasing competition from BRICs economies but also some opportunities. Inventions in the 1930s and top tips for survival.

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  • 1. The Coming Economic Downturn: How it will affect inventors and what they can do. Wednesday, 15 Oct 2008 Jane Lambert
  • 2. Topics - The Challenges - The Opportunities - What happened in the 1930s - Top Tips - Questions and Discussion
  • 3. The Challenges - Sharply reduced demand - Reduced public spending - Reduced credit - Cautious Investment - Rising Costs of Materials and Services - Rising Costs of IP enforcement - Increasing Competition from BRICs States
  • 4. Sharply Reduced Demand - Inventions are products and processes - Must compete with existing products - Consumers stick with what they know - Businesses less likely to take risk
  • 5. Reduced Public Spending - Bank Bail Out has to be funded somehow - Inflation and falling markets limit borrowing - Shrinking economy limits taxation - Heavy expenditure cuts the only option - Expect squeeze on Business Link, LEGI etc.
  • 6. Reduced Credit - Falling asset values will reduce collateral - Banks will become increasingly risk averse - Securitization has earned a bad name - Take time for banks to trust each other - Harder to get export credit
  • 7. Cautious Investment - Shrinking market will reduce incentive for R & D - Falling profits will reduce funds - Angels and VCs hurt by falling asset values
  • 8. Rising Costs of Materials - BRICs Economies will continue to grow - Recovery of fuel and commodities prices - Falling Value of sterling against $ and €
  • 9. Rising Costs of Enforcement - Rising Court Fees - Less scope for “pro bono” and “no win no fee” - Insurers have been hit by financial sclerosis - Probably professional fees will be forced down
  • 10. Competition from BRICs - Acronym for Brazil, Russia, India, China - Coined by Jim O’Neil of Goldman Sachs in 2001 - Exports hit by our troubles - Scope for internal growth - Will fuel demand for commodities - Heavy investment in R & D - China likely to overtake USA in 20 years
  • 11. The Opportunities - Growth of BRICs states - Competitive Manufacturing and Outsourcing - Market for UK Goods - Potential Source of Investment - Opportunities for Licensing in Technology - Brazil, China and India are members of WTO - New Opportunities here: energy, environment etc
  • 12. What happened Last Time 1929 Yo-Yo 1930 Frozen Food, Jet Engine, Sellotape 1931 Electron Microscope 1932 Polaroid and Parking Meter 1933 FM Radio and Stereo Recording 1934 Cats’ Eyes and Monopoly 1935 Nylon, Canned Beer and Radar
  • 13. What happened Last Time 1936 Voice Recognition Systems 1937 Photocopying 1938 Ballpoint Pens and Instant Coffee Also many new industries began to flourish: - motor vehicles - household appliances - cinema and radio
  • 14. Top Tips for Downturn - Avoid Invention Promoters like the Plague - Try to manufacture or outsource manufacture - Avoid unsolicited approaches to manufacturers - Obtain best professional advice - Members of the IPBA who accept public access work - Members of the IPLA or firms eligible to join - CIPA or ITMA members - PATLib Libraries
  • 15. Top Tips for Downturn - Identify Income Streams as far ahead as possible - Consider Potential Threats to Income Stream - Consider Possible Counter Measures - Consider appropriate Legal Protection for Income - Seek adequate IP and other Indemnity insurance
  • 16. Top Tips for Downturn - Network (Inventors’ Clubs, Business Clubs etc) - Internet Networking (Xing, Facebook etc) - Attend relevant Conferences Workshops and Seminars (especially if they are free) - Keep in Touch with IP Yorkshire
  • 17. Any Questions? Jane Lambert NIPC The Media Centre 7 Northumberland Street Huddersfield HD1 1RL T +44 (0)870 990 5081 E Jane.Lambert@nipclaw.com