Government launches “match-making service” for finding the perfect IP


The government has launched a “match-making” service to connect startups with publicly researched intellectual property.


Source IP is a “digital intellectual property marketplace” providing a “single portal” to make it easier for businesses to access IP created by Australian universities and commonwealth organisations through a “one click” platform.


Users can browse the platform, find IP they are interested in and directly contact the owners.


IP Australia director of business improvement and innovation Matt Fenech says it’s a “simple way” to address a big problem in Australia – commercialising inventions and innovations.


“It’s using the treasure trove of data we have here through a very user-friendly website,” Fenech tells StartupSmart.

“Owners can indicate the licensing agreement in layman’s terms so everyone can understand what they’re talking about.


“In the past we’ve had patent databases here but with no contact ability. The address given is usually for an attorney.


“It’s hard for people to find this information and it usually comes about through luck.”


The searchable database now includes IP from all 40 Australian universities, as well as commonwealth organisations like the CSIRO and Data61. Medical research institutes will also begin contributing to the platform from December.


A core focus in developing the platform was on simplicity, Fenech says.


“It’s really just one click to contact – it’s similar to CarSales. You just enter a name, email address and what you’re interested in and it’s gone.


“What we’re trying to do is collate all that information into one place so it’s really easy to search and find these types of inventions.”


Assistant minister for innovation Wyatt Roy launched Source IP on Monday morning in Canberra.


“Source IP presents us with opportunities to bridge the gap between research and innovation by strengthening collaboration between publicly funded researchers and industry to drive innovation,” Roy says.


“[It] directly supports the aim of putting innovation at the heart of our economic agenda.”


Fenech says the resource can be useful for startups to find contacts as well as IP.


“Go and have a look for technologies that you’re specialists in or are interested in developing further,” he says.


“You may not find the exact patent but you may be able to find expertise in that field and people willing to share what they’ve learned and that’ll limit the amount of work you have to do.”


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Denham Sadler is the editor of StartupSmart. He was previously a journalist at the publication and has worked as a freelancer for the Guardian, the Saturday Paper and the ABC. In his spare time he likes puns and jaffles.