The European Commission has launched Ideas Powered for Business, a grant program worth a total of €20 million created to help European small and medium-sized businesses access their Intellectual Property (IP) rights.

The initiative is aimed at companies that want to develop IP strategies and protect IP rights at national, regional or EU level. The fund makes available for each SME a grant of up to 1,500 euros for services, provided also through consultancy, of pre-diagnosis of IP (IP scan) and/or applications for trademarks, designs or models.

The conditions for submitting a request are the correspondence to the official definition of SMEs provided by the European Union and to be based in one of the 27 Member States.

The distribution of resources will be managed during 2021, in the following windows: 11-31 January, 1-31 March, 1-31 May, 1-31 July, 1-30 September. Therefore, it will be necessary to apply within these time intervals, with the possibility of applying in more than one window for the refund of more services, but always remaining within the maximum threshold of 1,500 euros.

As part of this opportunity, it is possible to take advantage of a targeted consultancy provided by Malta Business Agency, both for submitting the application and for the specific services of trademark creation, accompaniment to the procedures, conflict check and trademark registration.

Specifically, the services provided that will be fully or partially refund are:

> IP Pre-Diagnosis: an essential step in developing your IP strategy. The team of consultants will review the company’s business model, products and/or services, and growth plans and outline a strategy to help you decide what IP rights to apply for, how to develop your IP portfolio if it already has registered rights, and how to plan your future strategy.

> Trademark, Design or Model Application: To register a trademark or design at national, regional (Benelux) or EU level, you can apply for a 50 % refund on the basic fees. Territorial protection depends on the company’s business strategy and growth plans which are part of the integrated service package offered by our team of consultants.