Kaypok, MI’s director of intellectual property quoted in the Financial Post

Article focuses on importance of intellectual property protection for small businesses

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Dr. Stacey Ivanchuk, director of intellectual property for MaRS Innovation.

Dr. Stacey Ivanchuk, MaRS Innovation’s director of intellectual property, was quoted in Denise Deveau’s article, “Intellectual property protection is a game small businesses can’t afford to lose,” for the Financial Post on September 26, 2014 regarding the importance of protecting intellectual property for small businesses.

Here’s an excerpt:

Stacey Ivanchuk, director of intellectual property for MaRS Innovation in Toronto, says that protecting a startup’s technology is important especially from an investor’s perspective.

“One of the first questions investors will ask a company is, what is your IP position? To them it’s something they can talk about as an asset and shows that you are distinguishing yourself,” [Dr.] Ivanchuk said.

Ivanchuk said businesses run the gamut from doing nothing to protect their ideas to filing for patents on every idea that comes out of a brainstorming session. “Too early is not good because it can be a waste of money if the proof you expected down the road doesn’t happen,” she said. “But if you wait too long someone might beat you to the punch.”

Kaypok logoThe article also quotes Atul Asthana, CEO of Kaypok, a tech start-up in the text analytics space spun out from York University in partnership with MaRS Innovation:

In the high tech world especially, it’s not always easy to determine whether something should be protected or not, according to Mr. Asthana. “You have to be able to enforce it. If you do it poorly, you will be giving your ideas away and spending a whole bunch of money. It can become a real cat and mouse game sometimes,” he said.

For anyone who decides to go the distance, he says it’s an area where you can’t afford to scrimp.

“Get a good patent lawyer and go for it. Just because you have a patent filed it doesn’t automatically mean you’re strong. There can be many loopholes, and there are people out there who are really good at defeating them,” Mr. Asthana said.

The most important thing to keep in mind is that “there has to be a point” to whatever you’re protecting.

The full article is available on the Financial Post website.

Posted by Elizabeth Monier-Williams, director of marketing and communications.