ECO4451 Bayer and Pfizer Company Intellectual Property Rights Case Study

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Intellectual Property Rights

You work for a joint venture of Bayer and Pfizer working on the development of a super fertilizer. The process to make the fertilizer is not unique (i.e., it is known throughout the world). The specific compounds used in production is the trade secret/innovation. This fertilizer has the potential to increase crop yields by 15% for all commercial crops, assume the market can absorb this 15% without much distortion. To date, the joint venture has spent $4 billion on research and development. Current, reliable projections indicate a market of roughly $1.5 billion in sales per year once deployed.

The board of directors of both companies wants this product sold internationally to dominant the fertilizer market. The product has already met safety and efficacy standards in the US and EU. The product already has protection in the US and Eu as a trade secret (think Coca Cola or KFC)

Now, the venture must determine how to sell the product worldwide, but they want to protect the formula from being copied. There multiple ways for the venture to protect the formula, they include are not limited to:

Limited availability to select countries or companies

Trade secret protection

International Patent

Local Contracts

Segmented production

moreover, more (Google intellectual property protection)

Your job is to present the Board of Directors a set of recommendation regarding the protection of the formula. Note you must have at least four recommendations with the pros and cons of each. Then your overall best course of action, in your opinion.

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