The usual business model in the lighting industry was to sell LED lights and other luminaries in retail shops. This has changed with the development of new business models, where products are leased but bought. The new type of business models has already transformed industries like music and video, but also more traditional industries and B2B companies are adapting. One example in the lighting business is Signify, the former lighting branch of Philips. Signify drives this idea to a maximum by not only developing new business models and patenting them for themselves but setting up a specific licensing program to license out their developments.

Signify, former Philips lighting, started in 2008 the licensing program EnabLED. Here, over 490 Signify inventions covered by around 3650 patents are offered to the participants of the licensing program, so that they can develop new and innovative products at higher speed. This helps the licensee to reduce their time to market and helps the licensor by increasing the overall market size of the eco-system, which they dominate. So, Signify is playing the role of an eco-system orchestrator, who supports the growth of the other smaller eco-system companies to increase its own revenue in the long term, and supports these activities with a clear IP strategy.

Questions of the case study:

1 . Please identify and describe a use case from the relevant application area city, retail, industry, hospitality and sport.

2 . Please identify two patents from the Philips Signify portfolio that contribute to the generation of exclusiveness of this use case and the associated value creation. Please justify why the patents are suitable for protecting the use case and/or how they ensure value creation.

3 . Please develop and briefly describe an idea for another use case in the application field that is not specified in the information provided by Signify. Please develop and describe how this additional use case could be protected by IP (including non-technical IP rights). 2-3 briefly presented ideas are sufficient for this.

Use cases:

Group 1: Interact City
Group 2: Interact Retail
Group 3: Interact Industry
Group 4: Interact Hospitality
Group 5: Interact Sports

Group 1:
Felipe Bustos, Peter Conlon, Maria Boicova-Wynants, Nina Kolar, Timofey Rubchenko

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Group 2:
Merve Şimşek, Sinara Travisani Cardozo, Sachin Seshadri, Konstantinos Kontogiannis, Clement Lim, Rita Labundy

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Group 3:
Anita Yaryna, Anders Isaksson, Andreas Werner, Greta Zekiene, Nora Rüter, Véronique Bolinches

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Group 4:
Yanan Huang, Claire Laurens de Lopez, Branimir Puškarić, Andrea Foglia, Ricardo Cali

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Group 5:
Mohsen Ahmadi, Terita Kalloo, Johannes Holzmair, Steffen Rutter, Shu-Pei Oei

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Thanks to Centre d’Etudes Internationales de la Propriété Intellectuelle – CEIPI. If you want to learn more: Follow us at IP Business Academy