With World Intellectual Property Day 2023 on April 26th celebrating Women in IP, one of Greater Manchester’s inspirational business innovators, Gaynor Thomasson, explains why SMEs need to recognise and protect this valuable asset.
Gaynor Thomasson, owner and founder of Heelz and Toez, a company that makes customisable children’s shoes, certainly falls into the same category. Having successfully appeared on Dragon’s Den, Gaynor is recognised for her trail-blazing approach to sustainability and innovation in the fashion sector.
Central to this journey was seeing the importance of IP when she developed her shoes and needed to patent them. Gaynor overcame her challenges with the help of GC Business Growth Hub.
“I cannot stress the importance of addressing the subject of intellectual property when embarking on your product development or business journey and especially when seeking investment,” she says.
“GC Business Growth Hub is an excellent place to get support with developing your pitch proposition and maximising the value of your business assets.”
Gaynor Thomasson, owner and founder, Heelz and Toez
The key to turning your assets into a competitive advantage for your business is identifying them, understanding their value and incorporating this into a clear IP strategy that is integrated with your business plan.
It’s important to stress that IP doesn’t just apply to products or technology. It also includes the knowledge, skills and creative expression of ideas that many successful businesses are increasingly built around.
Whether you’re currently aware of it or not, you will have lots of valuable IP assets within your business. Even if you’re a novice in this area, you may not be utilising these assets to their full potential, or have risks that you have not mitigated against.
Yvonne Grady, Head of Innovation at GC Business Growth Hub, notes: “More and more businesses are realising the value of their intellectual property and seeing the impact on their bottom line.
“I’d appeal to SMEs in Greater Manchester to make sure you don’t get left behind by your competitors, and get in touch with our IP experts. Through the specialist support that we provide and our connection with the Intellectual Property Office, we help businesses to monetise their assets.”