In a perfect example of the importance that big companies place on protecting their intellectual property, the Sega corporation has received an Intellectual Property Award from the Japanese government. The award is in recognition of the effort that the company has put into protecting its trade marks and intellectual property generally both at home and abroad.
The award was given in recognition of the manner in which Sega has expanded and managed its trade mark portfolio, which includes approximately 1,900 trade marks worldwide just for its Sonic the Hedgehog brand. In addition, the award acknowledged the manner in which the company had enforced its intellectual property through lawsuits in various countries around the world, particularly China. Sega had also issued guidelines to users of its ‘UFO Catcher’ and ‘Purikura’ photo booths to stop those terms from becoming generic which would invalidate the intellectual property within them.
The value of Sega’s trade marks, particularly in relation to Sonic, is related to the fact that there is a Sonic movie scheduled for release in 2022. There is also a new Sonic computer game which will be released in late 2022 on all of the major games consoles.
Sega is, of course, a large multi-national company. There are however lessons to be taken from the manner in which they protect their intellectual property. By taking steps to protect their intellectual property Sega is preserving the value of the brands allowing them to fully and effectively monetise their brands.
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