Industry Patent Quality Charter


“When building up an industry leading patent portfolio, we create it with a purpose in mind and at its core, Ericsson is always favoring quality over quantity. Instead of inflating portfolio numbers, we rather stay with the key principle of building our patent portfolio on our technology leadership and our ability to create useful patents of the right quality.”

Gabriele Mohsler
VP Patent Development

“We put a lot of effort into our inventions and need patents to turn them into innovation. Enforceable and valid (= high quality) patents are therefore very important for Siemens. Quality counts not quantity.”

Beat Weibel
Chief IP Counsel and Group Senior Vice President
Siemens AG

“For Heraeus as an innovative company, high quality patents are an essential asset which contribute to our business success. A thorough investigation of third-party patents is an essential step of our product development process. For these reasons, we rely on a thorough examination of patentability by the European and other patent offices so that we can focus our resources efficiently. We support the IPQC by ensuring the quality of our own patents as well as the joint effort of the IPQC members in addressing the quality standards of the examination process at the patent offices. It is important that the patent offices, such as the EPO, understand the issues of its customers and a dialogue with the IPQC regarding such issues can offer a path towards improving the patent system. We believe a reliable patent system is essential for a prosperous economy and benefits all participants.”

Thomas Spernat
Head of Intellectual Property
Heraeus Business Solutions GmbH

“In my view, legal certainty concerning FTO and protection of inventions is fundamental for an economy driven by technical innovation. Patent quality provides that legal certainty, and the patent offices are the designated gatekeepers for maintaining that quality. Any patent office that prioritizes process efficiency over patent quality is not living up to its primary task.

The IQPC members have committed to patent quality as applicants. Now, we are seeking a constructive dialogue with the patent offices to ascertain that the patent quality remains high throughout the entire patent life cycle for the benefit of all market participants.”

Tim Bast
Vice President Legal Affairs, Intellectual Property Rights
Tetra Pak Group

“R&D departments develop product innovations. R&D engineers, however, also have to contribute to assess third-party patents to ensure freedom to operate. Declining patent quality means more effort for engineers to evaluate patents. Time that could be used to drive innovations.”

Christian Grünberger
Director Intellectual Property
MTU Aero Engines AG

“When it comes to assessing the strength of patent portfolios, the one thing I always tell people is that it is not just about quantity, you have to look at the quality of the patents, because some patents are more relevant and more fundamental and therefore more valuable than others.

And in fact, some companies over-declare, claiming the relevance of lots of patents even though they may not be truly inventive or genuinely relevant to the standard. So quality is crucial and at Nokia we focus on quality, which is why we are pleased to support the Industry Patent Quality Charter.” 

Tuomas Saukkonen
Head of Cellular Standards Portfolio
Nokia Technologies Oy

I personally and my Company Bayer do support the IPQC as patents are core to enable our R&D to be sustainable in producing solutions for health and against hunger. Patents are due to reliably protecting the results of our efforts and therewith enabling such sustainable R&D by securing the appropriate recovery of expenses and benefits.

IPQC tries to prevent the EPO from continuing a strategy of enhancing what they call “productivity” which from our point of view leads to an erosion of substantial patent quality. We cannot afford this, so the IPQC likes to cooperate with the EPO to improve the situation and come back to the quality the EPO stands for. We think this is the right thing to do.”

Joerg Thomaier
Head of IP Bayer Group
Bayer AG

“My motivation for joining this group stems from a strong belief in the importance of patent quality. I am convinced that the strength of a patent lies not only in its grant, but also in its ability to withstand opposition or potential revocation in legal proceedings. By improving the quality of patents at the grant stage, we can ensure robust protection for the innovations they cover, thereby fostering a healthy and competitive business environment.

Moreover, I am enthusiastic about the prospect of collaborating with other experts in this field. I firmly believe that our collective efforts and shared expertise can significantly improve the granting phase of our European patent system. Enhancing this crucial stage is a key focus of our work, as it sets the foundation for the robustness and validity of patents. This initiative extends beyond just protecting our individual interests; it’s about contributing to a system that brings tangible benefits to all players in the innovation ecosystem.”

Gianluca Previti
Global Head of Intellectual Property
Iveco Group N.V.

“As a lighting company dedicated to innovation, Inventronics relies on high quality patens to secure our innovative product line up. The whole patent system was built on high quality patents to foster innovation. Unfortunately, quality is more and more replaced by quantity. This weakens the patent system, as uncountable companies around the world rely on patent quality for product development, freedom to operate and enforcement. 

As a former patent examiner, I know the pressure to deliver on numbers, as patent filings are always increasing. But time is the most powerful adjusting screw for patent quality, so an adequate amount of time and powerful tools are key to ensure a high-quality patent examination process.”

Matthias Burkhardt
Senior Patent Counsel | Intellectual Property
Inventronics GmbH

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