An intellectual property (IP) Hub has been launched by Microsoft 4Africa to benefit local developers and independent software vendors by giving them necessary tools to develop, protect and monetize their innovations.
The IP Hub which is starting in Kenya, will be introduced to other countries on the continent and is set to will play a key role in the empowerment of African innovators and start-ups by helping them establish networks with the right investors.
The initiative will also be very critical in helping the innovators monetize their ideas.
The process of IP registration, streamlining, digitization and education on the importance of intellectual property protection will be managed by the local government.
The Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative was established to improve Africa’s economic development and global competitiveness.
The initiative is aimed at empowering Africans with great business ideas for business is built on the dual beliefs that technology can accelerate growth for Africa, and Africa can also accelerate technology for the world.
The initiative encourages IP culture in Africa through the empowerment of young innovators to use established copyright, trademark, trade name and patent programs. The initiative will also help protect the innovators from being exploited, intellectual theft, relegating Africa to the backend of the knowledge economy ranking.
“Most African innovators function on the premise that the idea is theirs until someone else takes it to market, or duplicates it. As Africa’s innovation continues to flourish, the future remains uncertain if these promising ideas are not supported and protected properly,” said Louis Otieno, director for Legal and Corporate Affairs, Microsoft 4Afrika.
Microsoft says investment into such an initiative will represent its increased commitment to Africa and the promise that Africa holds in line with economic growth and innovation.