Why are trademarks important?
- Trademarks play an essential role in protecting consumers and in promoting global economic growth.
- Trademarks enable consumers to make quick, confident and safe purchasing decisions.
- Trademarks promote freedom of choice.
- Trademarks and related intellectual property encourage vibrant competition for the benefit of consumers, workers, brand owners and society at large.
What are they worth?
The value of trademarks has been demonstrated through various brand rankings and in recent studies conducted in the United States, the European Union, by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), and most recently by INTA and the Inter-American Intellectual Property Association (ASIPI) in Latin America.
Las marcas en América Latina: Estudio del impacto económico en cinco países de la region (Chile, Colombia, México, Panamá y Perú)
Trademarks in Latin America: A study of their economic impact in five countries in the region (Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Panama, and Peru)
INTA and ASIPI collaborated on this study to determine the impact of trademark-intensive industries on the economies of Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Panama and Peru. The study focuses on trademarks’ contribution to gross domestic product (GDP); external trade; tax revenue; foreign direct investment and job creation, and on their benefit to employment and wages. Across the five countries, trademark-intensive industries generated 8% - 26% of total employment; and 10% - 21% of GDP. This is equivalent to 18.5 million jobs and a value added per person of US $2,390 annually.
Currently, the Spanish version of the study is available. The English version will be published in January 2017.
Intellectual property rights intensive industries and economic performance in the European Union (EPO and EUIPO 2016)
According to this study, in the period 2011-2013, IPR-intensive industries generated more than 42% of total economic activity in the EU, where 36% alone (worth €4.8 trillion) was produced by trademark-intensive industries. IPR-intensive industries have also proven resilient during the economic crisis, and directly supported almost 28% of all jobs in the EU (60 million). While total employment during the recession declined of 1.7%, employment in IPR-intensive industries fell by 1%.
Intellectual Property and the U.S. Economy: 2016 Update (USPTO, 2016)
This study reports that IP-intensive industries continue to be a major, integral and growing part of the U.S. economy. Trademark-intensive industries are the largest in number and contribute the most employment with 23.7 million jobs in 2014 (up from 22.6 million in 2010). Copyright-intensive industries supplied 5.6 million jobs (compared to 5.1 million in 2010) followed by patent-intensive industries with 3.9 million jobs (3.8 million in 2010).
Intellectual property rights and firm performance in Europe: an economic analysis (OHIM, 2015)
This study looks at the contribution of IPRs at a company level; it is a follow-up to the 2013 study on IP contribution by OHIM and the EPO (see below).
This study, published on June 18, 2015, is based on official public financial data from more than 2.3 million EU firms, and covers companies which own patents, trademarks and designs at both national and at EU level . The study found that firms that own IPRs have on average 29 per cent higher revenue per employee, and pay on average 20 per cent higher wages, than firms that do not. In particular, SMEs that own IPRs have almost 32 per cent higher revenue per employee than SMEs that do not own IPRs at all.
Brands—Reputation and Image in the Global Marketplace (WIPO 2013)
This study examines the impact of branding on the global economy, describing key trends and patterns of branding activity across the globe, reviewing the role of trademarks and exploring how branding activities affect market competition and innovation.
The study estimates that global branding investments approached half a trillion dollars in 2011 and found a notable increase in branding investments relative to GDP in rapidly growing low- and middle-income countries.
Intellectual property rights intensive industries: contribution to economic performance and employment in the European Union (EPO and OHIM 2013)
According to this study, approximately 50% of industries in the EU are IP-intensive. These industries generated almost 39% of total economic activity (GDP) in the EU, worth—€4.7 trillion—, and directly support 26% (56 million) of all jobs in the EU.
The study found that trademark-intensive industries are responsible for the highest shares of both employment and GDP contribution.
Intellectual Property and the U.S. Economy: Industries in Focus (ESA and USPTO 2012)
This study showed that IP-intensive industries accounted for about $5.06 trillion in value added, or 34.8% of U.S. GDP, in 2010. Moreover, 40 million jobs, or 27.7% of all jobs, were directly or indirectly attributable to the most IP-intensive industries.