Why Do SMEs File Trademarks? Insights from Firms in Innovative Industries

45 Pages Posted: 30 Aug 2013 Last revised: 2 Sep 2015

See all articles by Jorn H. Block

Jorn H. Block

University of Trier - Faculty of Management; Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Institute of Management (ERIM)

Christian Fisch

University of Trier - Faculty of Management; Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Department of Applied Economics; Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM)

Alexander Hahn

University of Mannheim

Philipp G. Sandner

Frankfurt School of Finance & Management

Date Written: June 10, 2015

Abstract

Trademark filings have increased markedly over time. Although prior research has investigated the outcomes of trademark registration, including its effects on firm market valuation and productivity, little is known about why firms file trademarks. However, to interpret the increase in trademark filings and its economic effects, it is important to know and understand why firms file trademarks. Because trademarks are particularly important to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), this study analyzes trademarking motives using a survey of 600 SMEs in innovative industries. An exploratory factor analysis yields three distinct motives: protection, marketing, and exchange. A cluster analysis reveals four distinct clusters of firms with respect to the three trademarking motives. A comparison of these clusters reveals significant differences in several industry- and firm-level characteristics, including participation in service industries and relationships with external parties. Implications for research on SMEs, trademarks, and intellectual property management are discussed.

Keywords: Trademarks; SMEs; intellectual property; motives to file IPRs; cluster analysis

JEL Classification: C38, O34

Suggested Citation

Block, Jorn Hendrich and Fisch, Christian and Hahn, Alexander and Sandner, Philipp, Why Do SMEs File Trademarks? Insights from Firms in Innovative Industries (June 10, 2015). Research Policy, 44, 1915–1930 (2015), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2317515 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2317515

Jorn Hendrich Block (Contact Author)

University of Trier - Faculty of Management ( email )

D-54296
Germany

Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Institute of Management (ERIM) ( email )

Burgemeester Oudlaan 50
3000 DR Rotterdam, Zuid-Holland 3062PA
Netherlands

Christian Fisch

University of Trier - Faculty of Management ( email )

Universitätring 15
Trier, 54296
Germany
0049 651 2013033 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.unternehmensfuehrung.uni-trier.de

Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Department of Applied Economics ( email )

Netherlands

Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM) ( email )

P.O. Box 1738
3000 DR Rotterdam
Netherlands

Alexander Hahn

University of Mannheim ( email )

Universitaetsbibliothek Mannheim
Zeitschriftenabteilung, D-82247
Mannheim, 68131
Germany
+49-621-181-1560 (Phone)

Philipp Sandner

Frankfurt School of Finance & Management ( email )

Adickesallee 32-34
Frankfurt am Main, 60322
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.philipp-sandner.de

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