Dragons Den Episode 2 – IP and Registered Designs

Another interesting week in the Den and this week a matter of interest was to do with registered designs.

Funky wetsuits – Registered Designs

Patterns on a wetsuit instead of the usual black look was the idea from father and son entrepreneurs, Simon and Toby. After deciding to make a boring looking wetsuit funkier, the duo started their company, Funky Seal Wetsuits, and then entered the Den asking for £50k in exchange for 25% share in the business.

Their pitch got off to a good start with complements being given over the quality of the product and how quirky it is. The pitch started to go downhill as is usually seen on the Den because of low sales and entrepreneurs true understanding of the market of which they are entering.

The main elephant in the room appeared when they were told by Deborah that her issue is that the idea could be easily replicated which would concern any investor that their investment doesn’t have enough protection. This brings us on to the issue of registering a design which means that although an idea naturally cannot be protected which means the replication point is correct, the designs themselves would be protected if the creator registers them.

Ultimately, a registered design would protect everything that is involved in the wetsuit such as the decoration, shape, appearance and what is known as configuration regarding how the product is arranged in full. The obvious protection to be sought by Simon and Toby would be the patterns themselves. The particular wetsuit that was worn in the Den was what is known as a ‘repeated surface pattern’ which can be protected no different to other registered design patterns but has a difference in application when filing.

Further information on registered and unregistered designs, which can still obtain protection, can be found at our sister website www.protectyourdesign.com.

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