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We can't stress the importance of securing intellectual property (IP) enough. Securing satisfactory protection of a company’s or person's IP is an essential step in turning ideas into real business assets with a very real and usable market value. It is also the first step in deterring any potential infringements that may come your way. Surprisingly, there are even more benefits from securing your IP that may include access to new markets and the creation of a unique brand. But securing IP is not enough.

If you want to make the most of your IP and leverage everything you can get from it, it may behoove you to commercialize your IP. A huge hurdle for many small businesses is securing adequate funding to secure the IP, but commercialization of an invention is the next step–and often a whole new challenge. This is where entering a joint venture or other arrangements with third parties may seem appealing. It's even more tempting when you consider that only half of all startups survive the five year mark.

Startup funding usually comes from personal resources such as personal loans, friends, and family. Such funding sources are rarely, if ever, adequate for the development of a prototype that must be manufactured and sold–especially in such a short span of time. This is where commercialization comes in. Commercialization from a third party brings in funding that will help keep a business afloat and get the product made efficiently.

This shows that as you develop your own IP you have the incentives to protect and exploit it for yourself and your business's well-being. When you have the means to effectively manage your IP, you have the ability to commercialize your inventions. This also involves knowing how to license its know-how, marketing for creating a brand, and even as far as knowing how to develop other contractual arrangements such as sales of your product which can give you all those additional benefits we mentioned in the beginning. For now, know that those with expertise in securing protection can increase your startups valuation and help get funding through commercialization.

For more information on intellectual property check out Traklight's resources. Think you have intellectual property? Take our free quiz to assess your risk. 

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