Today, digital business models help companies create new ways to compete, collaborate, and operate within the market. With the value digitalization offers for business models, digital ecosystems impact business functionality and determine the way business is managed today. It is vital to understand the role of IP in digital ecosystems for businesses to win in exclusivity against competition. More about digital ecosystems and the evolution of digital transformation in industries can be learned in the Certified University Course on “IP in the Industry 4.0” at CEIPI.

The role of IP in the digital transformation from machines to ecosystems can be observed in the security ecosystem. One example is a smart IP strategy used by the German leader in security solutions, ABUS, where they developed an electromechanical door lock (EMDL), which was developed as a retrofit solution to enable customers to add remote control capabilities to a simple mechanical door lock with very little effort. The aim was to create a product which is easy to install, can be completely dismantled, and which cannot be assembled incorrectly. The EMDL extends on an ordinary mechanical door lock by means of an electric remote control and a data interface. In addition to the added remote-control capability, this also permits the integration of locks which are retrofitted in this manner into an alarm or locking system. 

But the development of digital and smart products is not the end point since the increased use of data in the IoT which makes interoperability of security systems an extremely important topic. As a reaction, the developers of security solutions are trying to set common standards in data-centric solutions and reduce the market fragmentation by the creation of a common platform and ecosystem. The driving force behind this is the Open Security & Safety Alliance. The Open Security & Safety Alliance is a non-profit, non-stock corporation that brings together like-minded organizations in order to create a framework of outlining a common standardized platform for security and safety solutions that is accessible for everyone. The platform brings multiple groups together in one ecosystem; device manufacturers, software developers, system on chip manufacturers, and system integrators.


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The business models of ventures such as Netflix or Tencent have already created measurable changes for their industries based on their IP strategies. These businesses have built a virtual marketplace that match two independent customer groups to enable commercial transactions. Nowadays, we see hundreds of such digital marketplace business models. To learn more about the development of digital business models, how to make them patentable and creating a business model canvas (BMC), click through the link below:

Digital ecosystems and the role of IP in the Industry 4.0 can be learned in the Certified University Course on “IP in the Industry 4.0 ” at CEIPI.