In response to the provincial government’s recent call to action, Kitchener, Ont.-based Communitech says it’s launching a new program for C-suite executives in both the startup and enterprise scenes to help them develop more effective intellectual property strategies.

Last July, the Ontario government announced a new governance framework and a team that’s focused on the generation of IP in the province. Subsequent roundtables and discussions with tech and business leaders led to an extension of Communitech’s existing Academy program focused on strategic IP. Communitech’s Strategic Intellectual Property for Tech Leaders program launches Spring 2021.

“This is one of the things that Communitech is really good at – bringing innovative thinkers together to exchange ideas, learn from one another and create solutions,” said Iain Klugman, Communitech CEO in a Jan. 11 press release. “We look forward to continuing this important work by engaging industry, academic and policy experts who are collectively working to strengthen Canada’s economic prosperity through the strategic use of intellectual property.”

According to the curriculum, the virtual program will cover:

  1. Building an IP business strategy and culture.
  2. IP portfolio building and global commercialization.
  3. Protection of trademarks and branding.
  4. Leveraging and defending IP positions.
  5. Monetizing, standards, valuation, insertion and data assets.

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Communitech also released the first in a series of white papers diving deep into technical, marketing, and process IP, where all three are “equally valued and integrated within a new IP framework,” according to its website.

The document highlights how Canada ranks 22nd out of 60 economies worldwide in the Bloomberg Innovation Index, trailing countries like Germany, South Korea, Switzerland, Singapore, Sweden and Israel by wide margins. It also cites countries like Singapore, a city-state with a population of only 6 million people that ranks fourth in the world as a blockchain ecosystem and fifth in the world in the development of a fintech sector, according to Startup Genome.

“This has happened because of the country’s sandbox program and because of the Singapore Fintech Festival, the biggest fintech event in the world, attracting more than 45,000 attendees form 130 countries. Bringing the world of fintech to Singapore exposes companies to the competition and spurs local innovation,” the white paper reads.

It also dunks on Canada’s inability to acquire vast amounts of money to simultaneously scale and apply money efficiently. Canada needs more CFOs who “understand the finance process in Canada as opposed to in the U.S.”

A 2019 report by the Impact Centre of the University of Toronto said that although “Canada is positioned second in the OECD for the amount of VC invested annually, we are in last place at turning this investment into Unicorns. This situation is so bad that even if we were to create four times as many Unicorns, we would still be in last place.”

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