IP rights such as patents, utility models, industrial designs, trademarks, or copyrights, are assets. Just like other assets, IP rights may be traded. This may, for example, be carried out by simply selling the entire right. However, license agreements are often preferred.
In a license agreement, a person or a company grants another party the right to commercially exploit an IP right and potential know-how connected to it. In return, the licensee will pay appropriate royalties to the licensor.
Both parties will profit from an advantageous license agreement, in that the licensor may access previously inaccessible markets or distribution channels, and the licensee gets access to new technology, know-how, products and market opportunities.
Furthermore, both parties may work together to defend the IP right against unlawful production, trade or import by others. Thereby, both parties will obtain and maintain a competitive edge on the market.
The cooperation may be further intensified by the mutual exchange of confidential know-how, research and development, and market information.
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