Portfolio and Contract Management

As every business and venture has at least one IP right and at least one contract, we asked Rob Lucas, Head of Intellectual Property, to tell us more about the portfolio and contract management work his team regularly undertakes.

What will I receive from portfolio and contract management?

The first thing you will have is more time, as we will take over the administrative work involved with keeping track of your IP rights. You will have access to an up-to-date database of your rights, what they are, where they are and any action being undertaken or to be undertaken. You will also have information such as official action and renewal dates readily accessible.

The reports you receive and the database you will have access to can also include summary details of the key contracts your business has entered into. This summary can include details such as the other party, renewal and other key dates (such as the dates on which price changes can be notified or negotiated), what IP or other assets are involved, the countries concerned, whether you have granted or received an exclusive right, etc. We can adapt the database to suit your particular requirements. Some clients want to see information as to what the financial liability levels are, whether the contract requires a third party’s involvement or whether sales channels are restricted. Other clients want the database broken down by type of contract with different information summarised. For example, the contract with the manufacturer could have the lead time information highlighted, whereas a distributor may have its products, territory and sales channels in the database.

You decide how many contracts we include in the database as not all your contracts will be considered “key”. In addition we can hold hard or soft copies of the contracts for you together with any amendments or variations which apply so that you always know the current form of the arrangement.

Is this just holding our contracts?

No, there are other elements within the management of the contracts.

Through our network of trusted accountants and attorneys both in the UK and overseas, we can monitor performance by your contracting party and this can take many forms. For example we can undertake random market checks to identify if undeclared products are on the local market. We can also arrange financial audits and quality inspections, these inspections would be to ensure that any ethical requirements of yours are being complied with. We can also undertake test purchases so that you can be certain that what is on the market is the correct product.

The management service will also provide pro-active advice by identifying potential gaps in your portfolio and making your portfolio more efficient. It is important that your portfolio is appropriate to provide the coverage your business needs, but not too wide as to render some of the portfolio liable to revocation for non-use.

Also a wider portfolio costs more and whilst it may be attractive to hold rights all over the world, is this the best use of your resources?

What other services can I receive?

There are many important records which your business will hold and we can hold the originals or copies as you require. A good example is the documents relating to the creation of a new product or other important works, as having these is essential if you ever needed to enforce your IP rights or defend your business from a claim of IP right infringement.

We hold documents for clients relating to the creation of specialist works, such as musical and lyrical works for musicians and music publishing businesses.

If these documents are summarised, it makes your role easier in terms of locating documents and quickly obtaining key information.

Our team

Rob Lucas

Partner

Head of Intellectual Property

Direct Line +44 (0)113 297 8941

Emma Roe

Partner

Commercial & IP

Direct Line +44 (0)113 288 2817

Mark Lumley

Partner

Commercial & IT

Direct Line +44 (0)113 297 7727

Sarah Briscall

Solicitor

Commercial

Direct Line +44 (0)113 831 3954