Protecting and respecting intellectual property is part of the Code of Conduct in the Fujitsu Way, which articulates the philosophy of the Fujitsu Group and the core values and principles guiding the actions of each of its employees. Accordingly, every employee recognizes intellectual property as a key corporate asset supporting business activities. Moreover, Fujitsu employees are acutely aware of the role that technologies backed by intellectual property play in enabling customers to rely with confidence on the products and services we deliver.
We are promoting an intellectual property strategy closely integrated with our business and R&D strategies. Each business unit and R&D division is individually responsible for analyzing the intellectual property assets owned by Fujitsu and other companies in their respective fields. Based on this analysis, they formulate and implement intellectual property strategies.
Linking Business and R&D Divisions
We are developing a framework to strengthen Group-wide intellectual property activities to enable the entire Group to leverage our intellectual property assets. Some issues, such as the need for international standards, require coordinated action among the global bases in the Group. Here, we use regular meetings among Group companies to share information as well as promote specific measures. In this way, we foster a unified approach to intellectual property activities.
Patent rights support technological innovation. Recognizing these rights as an important corporate asset, we are assembling a global patent portfolio centered on patents in Japan.
We ensure that the acquisition, maintenance and utilization of patents are carried out in keeping with the Fujitsu Group's global business development strategy. We therefore acquire, maintain, and utilize the patents we need in the locations (countries) where they are needed, covering development and production bases as well as our sales bases. Representative offices have been established in the US and China so that local research or inventions at development bases can be securely protected.
For obtaining patents in the US, Fujitsu has a framework not only for yielding inventions but for handling the entire adjudication process to promote efficient acquisition of high-quality patents.
We conclude cross-licensing agreements with prominent firms worldwide aimed at preserving a high degree of business latitude. This policy of opening our wide range of basic technology research for potential use in the business activities and technologies of other firms applies even in fields in which Fujitsu does not directly conduct operations. On a for-fee basis, we make available basic technologies when we believe this will foster broader use of our technology compared with commercializing it on our own. We refer to this as"technology marketing." An example of products commercialized by a licensee are an antibacterial mask and antibacterial stationery created through application of titanium apatite technology developed jointly by Fujitsu Laboratories Ltd. and the University of Tokyo. This demonstrates how the use of Fujitsu technology in fields outside our main business areas can stimulate the creation of new value.
[Acquisition of an Influential Patent]
The impact of infringing upon the rights of third parties goes beyond having to pay significant compensation. In the worst case, it could have a major economic impact on our company due to the loss of business opportunities. In addition, it could prevent us from providing products and services, thereby severely inconveniencing our customers. We are fostering a culture at Fujitsu that respects the patent rights of other companies, as well as creating an environment that allows all our engineers to utilize the ATMS/IR.net system* to efficiently and effectively research patents held by other companies.
* An ASP-based service which searches laid-open patent applications and prosecution history data provided by the Japan Patent Office.
Our Global Patent Portfolio
Fujitsu Patents by Business Segment
Source: Fujitsu survey based on Japan Patent Office data (Number of issued patents)
Source: IFI CLAIMS Patent Services (Number of issued patents)
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