The season premiere of Shark Tank aired down-under last night.
Whether you tuned in or missed it, don’t fear - we’ll be bringing you the brilliant concepts our Aussies bring to the tank this series, and look at how these entrepreneurs have protected their ideas and inventions.
What do our Sharks and investors look for in a start-up
If last night’s show did one thing, it highlighted the factors investors consider when deciding whether to back your start-up or not. Common ingredients include an impressive founder, a great idea or invention, a clear business plan and a competitive advantage – which can be your intellectual property (IP) protection - trade marks, designs, patents, plant breeder’s rights.
Last night Shark Steve Baxter gave Clever Score founder David Lambasa a piece of his mind for not having a clear plan for the business. Having a great idea is one thing, being able to execute it is another. Shark Janine Allis says “Goal setting is critical for success… we all need a BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal), your goals have to be scary”.
In a competitive market, IP can be your point of difference and competitive advantage.
It was great to see two out of the three pitches having a form of IP protection. Perth entrepreneur David from Clever Score and 25 year old entrepreneur Mick Spencer from ONTHEGO Sports Canberra both had protected their brand, that’s their business name and logos, with a trade mark.
David has also considered patent protection, having secured his Clever Score scoreboard invention in New Zealand. He also has a granted innovation patent in Australia for an unrelated product.
Protecting your trade mark will protect the identity of your goods and services, and prevent others from imitating your brand! A trade mark is used to distinguish your goods and services from those of another business.
Check out our interview with Canberra local Mick Founder and Managing Director of ONTHEGO customised sportswear start-up’s fight for IP protection.
Approaching overseas markets
A common theme for all of the entrepreneurs this week was going global. There are many ways to approach a global market with your intellectual property (IP).
You can start by answering six simple questions.
The case study ‘IP strategy to break into the Japanese market’ might also give you advice on how to approach a global market.
What’s licensing and franchising you ask?
Lynton V Harris entertainment entrepreneur from the Sharknado Alive franchise spoke about licensing. Licensing is a common strategy to commercialise your IP. It simply means that an IP owner permits another person to use the IP on agreed terms and conditions. Learn more about how you can license your IP.
Until next time…Episode 2 of Shark Tank airs 9.00pm Sunday 15 May on TEN.
- Not sure if you need a trade mark? Check out our trade mark basics page
- Find out more about approaching a global market
- Learn more about franchising and licensing. Check out our information on ways to commercialise IP
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