We are appropriately managing intellectual property rights (respect/protection) in all aspects of our business activities.
The FUJITSU Way code of conduct clearly states that "We protect and respect intellectual property."
In line with this statement, all Fujitsu Group employees recognize intellectual property as an important business asset that supports Group activities and gives our customers a sense of safety and trust in the Group as their partner, so employees are required to keep this constantly in mind as they perform their duties.
We established an internal rule in order to encourage the proper handling of intellectual property in October 1995. This rule not only specifies what all employees should do to acquire, maintain and use intellectual property rights, but also directs them to respect those of other companies.
The Group regards any infringement of intellectual property rights by its products and services as a serious defect. Accordingly, to avoid infringing other companies' patents, we conduct thorough searches of their patents at the initial stages of research and development and prior to putting the products or services onto a market.
We protect our business by dealing resolutely and swiftly with any and all infringements of Fujitsu's rights, and at the same time we respect others' rights, as mentioned above.
Fujitsu established Intellectual Property Unit as one of its corporate centers. The Intellectual Property Unit deals with any activities relating to intellectual property, in areas ranging from the development and planning of the intellectual property strategies of the Fujitsu Group to the utilization of intellectual property, including licensing of intellectual property rights. It is also promoting strategic standardization activities for creating international standards, so that everyone can take advantage of convenient services and use our products at ease.
The Intellectual Property Unit also takes the initiative in activities relating to the intellectual property of the entire Fujitsu Group. In each business group, an intellectual property strategy manager is appointed and assures seamless cooperation between the research and development sections and the intellectual property sections.
To promote efficient global business operations, the Fujitsu Group is making efforts to appropriately acquire, maintain, and utilize its intellectual property throughout the world. In particular, Fujitsu Group resident offices are located in China to ensure that all inventions produced as a result of efforts made in our research and development sites in those countries are identified without fail, and to promote applications for patents for those inventions. Furthermore, in the U.S., the Fujitsu Patent Center we established in April of 2008 in an effort to improve our ability to acquire patent rights is expanding its activities to improve the quality of our patents.
Fujitsu Group places importance on the employee education required to implement our intellectual property strategy. We believe that it is vitally important to foster our employees' awareness of the importance of intellectual property and to encourage them to integrate business, research and development, standardization, and intellectual property strategies when performing their activities. As part of our efforts to this end, we are developing a training system for increasing awareness of intellectual property, while offering a large number of training programs to ensure effective and efficient training to fulfill the needs of individual employees in their respective careers, thereby providing strategic employee education. We provide two types of training programs, e-learning and classroom education, so that employees can select the type suitable for their purposes and conditions.
The Fujitsu Group holds roughly 100,000 patents worldwide as of March 31, 2013.
As our business has become more global, our overseas patents have come to outnumber our domestic patents. The Fujitsu Group is striving to enhance patent portfolios by aggressively filing patent applications and acquiring patent rights globally, as well as by identifying inventions born from overseas research and development sites in places like the US, Europe, and China.
With respect to patent position, Fujitsu ranked 7th in Japan (based on our own research) and 11th in the US (based on IFI CLAIMS Patent Services research) in 2012 in terms of the number of patents registered. The Fujitsu Group's registered patents total 4,681 in Japan and 2,124 in the US.
In the interest of being thorough in disclosing activities involving intellectual property throughout the Fujitsu Group, we have been issuing annual intellectual property reports since 2006. These reports contain a wealth of information that ranges from the aims and roles of Fujitsu intellectual property strategies to initiatives and statistics.
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