An IBLF Award allowed Phytofutures to access a number of services from Intellectual Property (IP) specialists Mewburn Ellis. Phytofutures is a start-up company working, amongst other topics, on the use of algae for bioremediation, recycling and upgrading valuable nutrients.
Firstly, they had two very useful meetings to discuss the IP landscape around Phytofutures potential process and product offerings. To supplement this, Mewburn Ellis offered a “hotline” service, enabling Phytofutures to take advantage of IP advice on an ad-hoc basis.
To assist the company with future contracts, Mewburn Ellis developed NDA and MTA documents for a range of scenarios. Phytofutures have already been able to use these. In addition, they have been able to explore Trademarks through searches and preparation for registration.
Phytofutures describe the potential impact of this help as very significant, as without the IBLF voucher they would not (as a start up company) have been able to lever such valuable IP advice. They feel it has enabled them to make more informed decisions about how to proceed in future, and how to organise any partnerships for R&D.
Brenda Parker of Phytofutures said "The award has enabled us to access early legal advice and anticipate any issues of background IP or conflict which could prove problematic in future. In addition, we found discussing our business plans in light of IP with Mewburn Ellis very helpful as we decide on next steps."
Sean Jauss of Mewburn Ellis said "It has been exciting to work with Phytofutures and assisting on their early stage IP issues. The IBLF award has allowed us to provide, and for them to benefit from, legal advice at an earlier stage than many start-ups. Such advice is often valuable in setting the young start-up on the road to success."
This IBLF Award was sponsored by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).