Asia the focus at INTA 2023 annual meeting in Singapore


Registration is open for the International Trademark Association’s (INTA) 2023 Annual Meeting Live+, featuring an in-person event at Singapore’s Sands Expo & Convention Centre on 16-20 May, followed by a virtual event on 27-29 June.

With the theme of “The Business of Innovation”, the association’s 145th annual meeting features two curated educational tracks: one on IP and innovation and the other on business.

“INTA is excited about the IP-rich nature in Asia,” Etienne Sanz de Acedo, INTA’s CEO, told Asia Business Law Journal.

Asia the focus at INTA 2023 annual meeting in Singapore
Etienne Sanz de Acedo

“The work we are doing leading up to the annual meeting as well as the programming… reflects our wishes to support, explore and grow the opportunities throughout Asia for all INTA members, both local and international. This includes developing programming for patent professionals.”

Sanz de Adeco added that the annual meeting educational programme will cover a range of relevant topics for Asia-focused audiences, including a keynote presentation on the rise and growth of Asian brands, and case law updates from China and India.

The business track covers topics that will resonate strongly with the Asian business community, including IP asset management, IP management in M&A, sustainable innovation, and IP strategies for small and medium enterprises.

New to this year’s event is the business track programming, which will feature short and dynamic dialogues with regional business leaders, in addition to around 100 exhibitors showcasing the latest technologies in IP.

Zaheera Hashim INTA
Zaheera Hashim

Annual meeting co-chair, Zaheera Hashim, who is also a director and assistant general counsel at Procter & Gamble in Singapore, added that in a patent-intensive region like Asia, the event needs to speak in a way that resonates with businesses.

“They [businesses] are not talking about IP; they’re looking at the bottom line and they’re talking about innovation. This is reflected in the educational programme,” said Hashim. “The business track really hones several emerging trends in the IP and brands space. At the heart of it, we’re looking at intangible assets through the lens of the business owner and those in the c-suite.”

Topics covered in the business track include ideas for assets, IP as a financing tool, IP valuation, and the economics of brands. These are topics that brand professionals need to pay attention to today and that we see are receiving a lot of attention in the region.

“The IP and innovation track, on the other hand, covers many of the critical IP-related topics, registrants expect at an annual meeting,” Hashim added.

“This includes enforcement and anti-counterfeiting, complementary rights and brand restrictions, and internet matters, among others. It also tackles the myriad emerging issues such as corporate social responsibility and emerging technologies – issues shaping the future of brands in the region and globally.”

After a missed opportunity to hold the 2020 annual meeting in Singapore due to the pandemic, Sanz de Acedo said the programme will also take advantage of the meeting location and feature thought leaders in IP and branding from across Asia. From more than 250 table topics to numerous immersive excursions around Singapore, the educational programme is complemented by various in-person and virtual business development activities.

“We are excited about the technology we will be leveraging this year to maximise the registrant experience, to help registrants achieve their meeting objectives, and to ensure that they get the most out of the annual meeting,” said Sanz de Acedo. “In-person registrants will have access to a new app designed to complement their on-the-ground experience in Singapore. They can use the app to manage their schedule, navigate the location, receive notifications from INTA, and explore the registrant directory.”

Furthermore, the virtual event in June will make use of an entirely different and new-to-INTA technology with which they will be able to connect and interact with other registrants. It will also be where registrants enter the live and on-demand educational sessions, participate in a live chat throughout the event, as well as access the registrant directory.

“In their own unique way, both technologies will offer comprehensive access and the ability to curate the experience to individual needs,” said Sanz de Acedo.

With more than 1,000 attendees having pre-registered last year, Sanz de Acedo expected 7,000 brand professionals, entrepreneurs, and government officials from around the world to participate in the event. The annual meeting accommodates three registration types, including Live+ (a combination of in-person and virtual), in-person only and virtual only. Registration for the virtual-only meeting will open on 13 March.