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complex licensing, R&D and collaboration


Establishing licensing structures which seek to grant different rights of use across different fields and applications and within different jurisdictions can seem complicated and challenging. Choosing the right licensing model for your business and putting in place the right documentation is essential to ensure that you maximise the value of any IP exploitation and effectively manage your licensing arrangements. An ad hoc and reactive licensing programme may lead to inefficient licensing, loss of revenues, difficulties in monitoring licensee activity and the granting of conflicting licences which could lead to licensee claims.

We have significant experience of advising a wide range of clients across numerous sectors on complex licensing arrangements. We carefully review existing licensing structures, the IP rights to be licensed and, current business strategy, as well as our client’s current licensing objectives. We help our clients to develop and implement an efficient and effective licensing structure with associated documentation that compliments their business strategy, meets their licensing objectives and which can be managed independently by the business.

R&D and collaboration arrangements can also involve complex licensing and ownership issues including use of background IP contributed by the parties for purposes outside of the project and the use of project foreground IP by the project participants, both for academic and commercial exploitation purposes.

We have extensive experience of R&D and collaboration agreements with members of the team having participated in secondments at a leading global engineering business, dealing with these types of arrangements on a daily basis. We understand the requirements and challenges faced by industrial participants and research organisations and the industry ‘ways of working’, as well as the issues associated with government funded projects including State aid considerations.

what we do...

  • Advising you on appropriate licensing models - for the exploitation of your IP assets including reviewing existing licensing structures and your current licensing objectives.
  • Drafting and helping you to implement new licensing agreements - including the provision of template agreements with guidance on when and how documents are to be used by the business, as well as providing training to staff on the use of documents if required.
  • Drafting and negotiating R&D and collaboration agreements.
  • Specialist IP exploitation team - across our Birmingham, Nottingham and London offices drawing on experience from the worlds of engineering, electronics, telecommunications and biotechnology to deliver a service that understands industry and innovation.
  • Advising industrial participants and research organisations on R&D and collaboration arrangements - including the licensing of background IP and the ownership and exploitation of project foreground IP, and the implications of government funding on the ownership of foreground IP, including State aid considerations.

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recent experience

Declan Cushley

Declan Cushley

Partner and Head of IP and Commercial Group

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