The Silicon Review
In the digital world, acquiring a patent is important when developing an innovative product or solution. This is primarily done to avoid the risk of being copied. Besides that, a patent can protect and enhance the value of your service or products, particularly in the technology segment. It is important to be aware that once a product or an idea is out on the internet without a patent, it is not very difficult for someone to steal the concept and claim it as their own. Benefits of patent filings are exclusivity, increased financial valuation of the company, revenue through licensing, and business development opportunities.
Maintaining your patents can be a challenging task; this is where Minesoft helps individuals and businesses. The company is an innovative online patent solutions provider offering its products and services to national patent offices, professional search firms, patent attorney firms, academic institutions, and many Fortune 500/FTSE 100 companies worldwide. Solutions and services include patent search and analysis, patent monitoring, competitive intelligence systems, knowledge management systems, and more. Minesoft was founded in 1996 and has offices in London, UK/ New York, and Washington, USA / Düsseldorf, Germany.
In conversation with Ann Chapman-Daniel, Co-founder and CEO of Minesoft
Q. How can businesses benefit from your online patent search service?
Knowing and studying global patent data is an effective tool to avoid parallel developments and wasted R&D efforts in overcrowded research fields. By ignoring and/or undervaluing IP, businesses can be driven into risky situations, such as opening up your company to infringement proceedings, which could result in further loss of profits and harm your long-term corporate survivability, or the possibility of competitors taking advantage of your own technological innovations. Regardless of the business’s IP strategy, Minesoft offers a variety of products to help. Our online searchable patent database, PatBase, provides access to hundreds of millions of patent documents from all over the world. This amount of data might seem daunting, but with a powerful, unlimited Analytics platform and variety of tools available to help interrogate this information more effectively, it’s easier to extract actionable competitive intelligence to benefit your business.
In this era of knowledge economies, Minesoft’s effective knowledge management system, Pat-KM, provides global patent data with integrated workflow for monitoring, classification, and disseminating relevant patent records. This helps mitigate challenges, such as potential infringement, wasted R&D expenditure in overcrowded research fields, and competitors taking advantage of technological innovations. Protecting, monitoring, and investing in your company’s intellectual property is beneficial to companies of all sizes. A well-informed IP team can help decision-makers adjust their patent strategy to strengthen business and IP value.
Q. How do you manage to gather the latest patent information?
Since the company was founded in 1996, we have cultivated a strong relationship with patent offices around the world, helping us achieve the coverage we have today, one of the largest in the industry. Minesoft clients have access to patent data from 106 jurisdictions, and 74 of these are full text, i.e., including the claims and description as well as bibliographic information. Quality of data is as important as quantity in the patent information industry; companies make important strategic decisions based on this data, so reliability is the key. We make thousands of error corrections to data, adding a lot of additional information and quality to the file, such as family creation, separating incorrect families, correcting spelling or company names. Our partners in the development of PatBase, RWS, are renowned as providing top-quality translations for the IP industry, their translators go through and manually translate company names for greater accuracy. The years of work that have gone into our backlog of data are not easily recreated.
Q. What are the adversaries that can be solved with your offering?
Today, all manner of users want easy-to-query databases and the ability to create everything from board-level presentations to detailed invalidity reports seamlessly. Search and analytics platforms need to allow users to quickly go from initial query to actional graphical output just as easily as to create search results ready to submit to worldwide patent offices. Minesoft has constantly innovated its platforms to allow professional searchers as well as business executives to quickly gain the ability to answer the business-critical question at hand in the timeliest manner. Search platforms such be built for users, by users, irrespective of what background those user communities have. Such flexibility needs to evolve quickly, and Minesoft has struck the right balance between development cycles, all through listening to clients’ feedback.
Q. Do you have any new services ready to be launched?
We are developing a new Search Engine that should be released this September, and we will be working on it in the coming few years to develop some neat new functionality in areas like natural language searching and semantics. We will also develop the area of automated translations and landscaping analysis. AI is a big buzzword in the Online Publishing Industry at present, and we are designing new ideas in this area to automate further and streamline our products. We host about 140 million patent (sci-tech) documents right now, and this is increasing literally every week. Such a large body of research material needs to be made accessible to companies who are working to pioneer new solutions. Search speeds are getting exponentially faster, the computer industry and data delivery mechanisms (including the Internet) are developing themselves, alongside our company.
Meet the leader behind the success of Minesoft
Ann Chapman-Daniel is the CEO and Co-founder of Minesoft, the online patent solutions provider. Ann Chapman started her career at a big international publishing company (International Thomson, later Thomson Reuters) and was sent all over the world to visit clients and secure business. After 6 years, Chapman moved to a US publishing company (Ziff Davies Group) in the field of business information (companies and markets). She then returned to patents and sci-tech publishing with France Telecom Group spending 3 years there as a Director and Managing Director. After just becoming a mother, Ann Chapman and her husband Ophir Daniel took the plunge to establish their own company, Minesoft. Daniel was at the time programming in the early Internet era after starting life in Israel, working in Aviation. They decided to combine their skills and were lucky to be given a distribution and development deal by France Telecom, and a small initial loan that started them off.