19 April 2018

Our annual flagship publication, the Australian IP Report, shows 2017 was a strong year for trade mark and design applications. The report sets out trends and analysis on the use of the IP system by Australians in 2017.

Demand for both trade marks and designs grew by 7 per cent in 2017, fuelled by increased overseas demand for rights in Australia. IP Australia received 76,594 trade mark applications and 7,708 applications for registered designs, with growth driven by non-resident applications.

Australian residents made up 61 per cent of total Australian trade mark applications in 2017, with the majority of applicants being small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and private individuals. Filings by non-residents grew by 25 per cent over the year, indicating confidence in the Australian market from overseas businesses.

Standard patent applications grew by 2 per cent in 2017, continuing a gradual upward trend. Non-residents accounted for 91 per cent of Australian patent applications over the year. Applicants from the United States filed around 46 per cent of total patent applications.

Australian residents file more than three times as many patent applications overseas as they do in Australia, with the US the most popular destination (comprising 42 per cent of total Australian applications abroad).

“This is a positive trend. Australia’s is a small market compared to the rest of the world and it is encouraging to see Australian innovators moving to protect their innovations and pursue returns in world markets,” IP Australia’s Director General, Patricia Kelly, commented.

”Trade mark filings abroad have also been on a strong growth trajectory since 2009, with average annual growth of 13 per cent. In 2016 China overtook the US to become the most preferred destination for Australians filing trade marks abroad. This reflects activity by Australian businesses seeking to capture opportunities presented by the China market” said Ms Kelly.

The IP Report was announced at the Institute of Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys of Australia’s Annual Conference in Melbourne.