The recently conducted study by EUIPO and OECD reveals that small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can suffer significant impacts due to the occurrence of counterfeiting. Nonetheless, a significant number of SMEs do not take assertive measures to safeguard their products and intellectual property rights.
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are significantly less likely to exist after five years if their intellectual property is infringement: That is one result of the recent study Risks of Illicit Trade in Counterfeits to Small and Medium-Sized Firms by EUIPO and OECD. According to this study, this is the first time that such research has focused on SMEs.
For SMEs, counterfeiting can result in significant harm. As significant effects of counterfeiting on SMEs, the study lists lost sales, harm to a company’s image, and loss of competitive advantages. Additionally, smaller businesses frequently lack the resources needed to make up for financial losses brought on by counterfeit goods; as a result, IP violations may be more risky for SMEs than for larger businesses.
The study found that counterfeiters target all categories of products made by SMEs. Electronics, apparel, cosmetics, and toys are the items that are most frequently counterfeited. The majority of the fake goods are made in China and Hong Kong, and they are frequently sold online: Nearly half of all SME product counterfeits that were being shipped to the EU were bought online.
The research also emphasizes the critical role that smaller businesses play in the economies of OECD members and Europe. In this region, SMEs account for a majority of businesses and two thirds of jobs.
The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development released the SME survey at the beginning of 2023. The European Commission, the World Customs Organization (WCO), and the US Department of Homeland Security all provided data from customs seizures for the study.
As a pioneer in anti-counterfeit solutions, Advast Suisse is committed to addressing this global threat. Our specialists at Advast Suisse are available to assist you if you want to learn more about the world of fake goods or if you’re prepared to take the next step in protecting your products and brand.
Source and link to the study (PDF): “Illicit – Trade Risks of Illicit Trade in Counterfeits to Small and Medium-Sized Firms”