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Saturday, December 9, 2023

JPO awards startups that have made remarkable efforts in IP! The 4th "IP BASE AWARD

The JPO operates the IP BASE, an IP community portal site that aggregates the latest information on basic knowledge, support measures, and events related to IP strategies essential for startups.
On Friday, March 3, the 4th IP BASE AWARD ceremony was held at the Akasaka Intercity Conference!


The IP BASE AWARD recognizes the best startups and IP support professionals and ecosystem players that have been highly recognized for their IP efforts.
By encouraging startup IP activities and IP support activities, we encourage startups to utilize IP, IP experts to support startups, and startup IP ecosystem initiatives.
In addition, we will award outstanding activities and initiatives so that they can serve as models for startups and IP professionals who will grow in the future.

The competition consists of three divisions: Startup Division, IP Expert Division, and Ecosystem Division. The Selection Committee will review the entries and select a maximum of one Grand Prix winner (one company) in each division.

Judging Criteria for Each Category

○Startup Division
Target: Startups that are unlisted and have been in business for less than 10 years that are actively acquiring and utilizing strategic intellectual property rights.
Review Criteria:
Based on steady IP activities (number of applications, IP portfolio, internal system development, etc.), we will evaluate startups that have established excellent IP strategies and IP-related initiatives and activities that can serve as a model for other firms.

Intellectual Property Expert Division
Target: Patent attorneys, attorneys at law, and members of corporate IP departments who are motivated to support startups and contribute to the establishment of IP strategies for startups through such support.
Review Criteria:
IP professionals who, based on their experience in supporting startups, provide IP support to startups in a startup-specific manner or in a way that promotes the future development of startups, and who serve as a norm for other professionals and contribute to the expansion of the professional community supporting startups. The evaluation will be based on the following criteria

○Ecosystem Division
Target: Individuals and organizations (VCs, investors, accelerators, incubators, companies involved in startup initiatives, people from research institutions, etc.) who are contributing to the revitalization of the startup ecosystem by actively using IP to evaluate, support, and educate startups, and by conducting activities that go beyond the IP industry. companies, research institute personnel, university personnel, etc.) that are engaged in startup initiatives. Include IP specialists and startups if they contribute to the ecosystem and have experience in indirect institution building and assembling business schemes.
Review Criteria:
Individuals and organizations (VCs, investors, accelerators, incubators, companies engaged in startup initiatives, people from research institutions, people from universities, etc.) that have a track record of activities that go beyond the IP industry and contribute to the development and expansion of the community of support for startups, including IP support The evaluation will be based on the following criteria

The following startups, IP professionals and organizations were selected for the Grand Prix and Incentive Awards out of 55 entries in the 4th IP BASE AWARD.

Introduction of the Grand Prix winners of the 4th "IP BASE AWARD

Startup Division]

Heartseed Corporation

Established in 2015 with the aim of industrializing the results of years of research on cardiac regenerative medicine by Professor Fukuda of the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine at Keio University, a leader in regenerative medicine research. With the mission of "opening the door to heart disease treatment through regenerative medicine," this biotech startup creates a proprietary technology that produces heart cells from iPS cells and transplants them into heart tissue.

Award Reason:
As a biotech university startup, the company was highly evaluated for its extensive licensing activities aimed at social implementation based on the idea that the market value of intellectual property is linked to the business. In particular, the conclusion of a major licensing agreement with Novo Nordisk, a major international pharmaceutical company, for the first time in Japan in the field of gene and cell therapy, is an example to be emulated by other bio start-ups.

Intellectual Property Expert Division

Patent Attorney Visiting Professor, Kobe University

As an expert in biotechnology, chemistry, pharmaceuticals, and complex IT, he has a wide range of IP rights including infringement litigation, invalidity challenge cases, and IP due diligence, and has been involved in the establishment of rights and strategy planning in Japan and other countries. In recent years, he has been actively involved in educational activities on IP and entrepreneurship at a number of universities, including Kobe University, where he is a visiting professor, and has been active in many IP-related communities.

Award Reason:
In addition to a large number of support cases, he has contributed to increasing the corporate value of startups in the biotech field through his high level of expertise. In particular, the firm has successfully led to multi-billion yen deals and large biotech technology projects. In addition, the firm was also highly regarded for its support for projects involving overseas companies and its proactive efforts to build bridges with universities, as well as its other public interest activities.

Winners of the 4th "IP BASE AWARD" Incentive Award

Startup Division]

Cover Inc.
The company operates "hololive production," a VTuber production using the "hololive" application developed in-house, which includes live streaming by its VTubers, media mixing, merchandise sales, music distribution, and AR/VR live performances.
Award Reason:
In addition to vigorous efforts to protect their rights against counterfeit products, they also report counterfeit products on the basis of copyright and trademark rights, and were evaluated as an example of effective use of intellectual property rights in general, not limited to patents.

SOLACOM Corporation
SORACOM, an IoT platform that provides a one-stop shop for IoT devices, communications, and applications needed to realize the IoT. SORACOM is available in more than 160 countries and regions around the world and is used in all industries.
Award Reason:
The company has established an invention committee chaired by the founder and director who is an engineer by which the business, development, and intellectual property departments collaborate to acquire intellectual property rights that contribute to management. The company's IP strategy, IP portfolio, and internal structure were evaluated as a model for many ICT startups.

booost technologies inc.
As a technology partner of NET-ZERO/ESG-driven companies, we support acceleration of sustainability management, providing various platforms to visualize, manage, offset, and report CO2 emissions, procure and supply CO2-free electricity, and comprehensively collect, visualize, and manage ESG disclosure items. Provides various types of platforms.
Award Reason:
The company has established barriers to entry from other companies through secrecy and rights acquisition, leading to the acquisition of new customers and fundraising, and is also strengthening its aggressive overseas strategy. The company was highly evaluated not only for building an IP portfolio, but also for making a business contribution through the specific use of its IP portfolio.

Intellectual Property Expert Division

Makoto Uchida Attorney at Law, iCraft Law Office Patent Attorney
He is qualified as both an attorney and a patent attorney, and has extensive knowledge and experience in contracts, and has assisted numerous startups from the perspective of both application and contract strategies. He is also well versed in cutting-edge areas such as quantum computers, space, Web3, and AI, as well as data platform construction and personal information protection law.
Award Reason:
The committee commended Mr. Kurokawa for using his background in science to support startups from both the standpoint of a lawyer in terms of contracts and a patent attorney in terms of application and rights acquisition practices. Such activities as a science-oriented lawyer are highly desirable for the growth of technology startups in Japan.

Junji Shimada, Principal, Patent Attorney, The University of Tokyo Edge Capital Partners (UTEC), Inc.
Joined UTEC in 2018. He is engaged in investment activities as a rare capitalist who can evaluate IP by utilizing his knowledge as a patent attorney to lead the management strategy, business development, and IP strategy of investee companies.
Award Reason:
The company is providing consulting services that make full use of its IP knowledge, contributing to business development and concluding business alliances based on IP analysis, and is trying to establish new horizons as an expert in both IP and investment.

Ecosystem Division

HVC KYOTO (Japan External Trade Organization, Kyoto Prefecture, Kyoto City, Kyoto Research Park Corporation)
A program centered on one of Japan's largest healthcare-specific, completely English-language pitch events, implemented since 2016 by the Japan External Trade Organization, Kyoto Prefecture, Kyoto City, and Kyoto Research Park, in cooperation with Kyoto University and others. It is the first step for researchers and start-ups to challenge the global market.
Award Reason:
The pitch event was recognized for its contribution to the transfer of IP to universities and other institutions, and for the fact that IP legal experts were officially mentored throughout the program.

Patent Integration Co.
Provides Patent Integration, an inexpensive SaaS-type patent search and analysis service. In addition to being able to search patents in major countries in Japan, the U.S., and Europe, the service is equipped with a visualization and overview function based on graph creation and natural language processing, and is used by technology-related startups.
Award Reason:
The company was commended for providing an inexpensive IP research tool and making IP information more accessible to startups.

Masakazu Yagi Japan Biodesign Society Osaka University
Led the development and launch of the Medical Device Innovation Human Resource Development Program. In addition to generating early examples of start-ups (one of which was acquired), he contributed to the delivery of the program to more than 2,000 people in industry, academia, and medicine in Japan, in collaboration with companies, local governments, universities, and other organizations.
Award Reason:
In the midst of a shortage of CEO personnel, the committee commended the development of a human resource development program related to a needs-driven development approach that considers intellectual property as one of the core elements from the perspective of considering exit strategies from an early stage, and the development of personnel to promote innovation in the MedTech field.

What is IP BASE?

The JPO launched the IP BASE in December 2018 as a "site that startups look at first" and "a site to connect with IP experts" to respond to the voices of startups who say, "IP seems important, but I don't know what to do first" and "I don't know who to consult with. In December 2018, we launched IP BASE, an IP community portal site, as a "site for startups to see first" and "a site to connect with IP experts.

It is operated with the aim of becoming a "base" for the startup IP community, where both startup professionals (startups, venture capitalists, accelerators, etc.) and IP specialists (patent attorneys, lawyers, etc.) can participate, by gathering the latest information on basic knowledge, support measures and events related to IP strategies that are essential for startups. The site is operated with the aim of becoming a "base" for the startup intellectual property community.

IP BASE" URL: https://ipbase.go.jp/

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