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Commercialising IP “vital”

16 August 2012

Commercialising IP “vital”

The New Zealand entrepreneur behind the success of BurgerFuel, and formerly Red Bull, Josef Roberts says commercialising IP is essential for New Zealand firms hoping to successfully compete on the world stage.

BurgerFuel now has stores spread across New Zealand and Australia, but also throughout the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Iraq along with Egypt, Qatar, Libya and Bahrain on the way.

“BurgerFuel is not an overnight sensation; it has taken many years to build up the brand both here and in diverse markets offshore,” says Josef.

The company has built up an impressive portfolio of brand protection internationally, having even fought off a Korean brand ‘saboteur and copycat’ successfully.

From Australia to the USA, Russia and India, to China, Brazil and Mexico and more recently in the Middle East, registration of the BurgerFuel brand and the iconic wings design has been secured, giving a solid platform of rights from which to launch the brand progressively around the globe.

Josef Roberts says the global brand protection exercise, involving local lawyers in dozens of countries, culminates in the arrival of registration certificates in numerous languages.

“It is critical that New Zealand firms are proactive and energetic in protecting their brands. This does take time; in my experience, investing in people, systems and brands requires immense patience, but it does pay dividends in the long term.”

Josef Roberts is a speaker at the Auckland Young Lawyers seminar series at Kensington Swan on 16 August.

Kensington Swan Partner Sheana Wheeldon, responsible for BurgerFuel’s brand protection, says a strong brand portfolio is critical.

“It gives certainty to potential franchisees, and offers the best chance to avoid rip-offs.

“BurgerFuel is a perfect example of a New Zealand firm taking its business model to the world, and at the same time showcasing the type of top quality food New Zealand is capable of producing,” she says.


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