LESI/EPO Joint Workplan

LESI Lets Innovate

Monday, November 16, 2020


We are delighted to announce that on Monday 16th November 2020, the European Patent Office (EPO) signed the first joint workplan with Licensing Executives Society International (LESI). The Workplan 2020/2021 was signed by EPO President Antonio Campinos and LESI President Audrey Yap during a video conference.

The two organizations developed the work plan under the Memorandum of Understanding entered into in Miami in January 2019 to focuses on IP training and resources for high-growth technology businesses.

Core initiatives will be co-ordinated around future joint events, following the success of last year's EPO-LESI high-growth technology business conference.

During the meeting, President Campinos emphasised the importance of strengthening the co-operation with LESI in helping businesses overcome the current economic crisis by investing in R&D and making the best possible use of patented inventions and the IP system as a whole. Special attention was given to the role of IP in path-breaking innovation and high growth among small and medium-sized enterprises. LESI President Audrey Yap concurred stating that in these unprecedent times many inventions and new technology has been and continue to be created by SMEs driven all the more the need to pivot and repurpose to adapt to the new normal. This is consistent with the LESI President’s theme to catalyse a movement to educate, strengthen support and encourage enterprises to use IP for business growth. LESI means business.

The cooperation covers more than 30 activities including conferences, trainings, seminars and joint publications. Telmo Vilela, Principal Director, International Cooperation and Patent Academy at EPO described LESI as the best partner for this endeavour and this was supported by Xavier Seuba Director of the European Patent Academy & EQE.

The EPO-LESI Workplan encourages cross network exchanges and lists new areas to foster sharing of knowledge particularly in getting patented technology into the marketplace. The increased importance of digital events and resources has been given due prominence in the work plan. As a consequence of COVID, we believe many of these activities planned to be delivered online will spread such information faster and more widespread as we deploy digital means and technology to proliferate this knowledge and share resources. In this regard PatLib 2.0 would continue to be a valuable hub for sharing of information across its centers in Europe and globally.

LESI President Audrey Yap touched on the alignment of our common goals, in particular, with EPO’s Strategic Plan 2023 which sets out to effectively coordinate with international organisations like LESI which represents a key base of licensing executives, IP and patent users for a network with global impact. LESI also aims to assist in furthering knowledge of IP with a view to effecting its optimum employment on a worldwide basis.

The signing of the Workplan is therefore a significant milestone for LESI as it reflects the implementation of the collaboration to serve these purposes.

John Paul, President-Elect of LESI, attended the virtual event and stated after the signing of the Work Plan that it’s great that LESI and the EPO will be working together even more on technology commercialization initiatives in the coming year.

Other LESI Leaders in attendance included Ichiro Nakatomi, incoming President-elect and Co-Chair, High-Growth Enterprises (HE) Task Force, now established under the Workplan 2020/2021 as the coordinating team, and Francisco Valesco, Chair of LES European National Presidents Council and president for LES Spain & Portugal.

EPO Press Release

Text of the January 2019 MOU between LESI and EPO

LESI EPO Joint Workplan