April 26, 2021 at 08:30PM

Amazon said on Monday (April 26) that a new program in Canada would connect small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) with law firms to protect their brands. The Intellectual Property Accelerator would make “it easier and more cost-effective (for SMBs) to obtain trademarks, protect their brands and tackle infringing goods both in Amazon’s stores and the broader marketplace,” the company said in a press release.

Amazon said that the program would have “a network of trusted Canadian Intellectual Property (IP) law firms  —  including woman- and minority-owned, multilingual firms — charging reduced fees on key services” at already negotiated prices. The release said the program would be available to any brand selling on Amazon.

“More than 30,000 Canada-based third-party sellers have grown their business with Amazon, reaching millions of customers while grossing more than $2 billion on Amazon’s stores around the world,” said Mary Beth Westmoreland, vice president, brand protection at Amazon. “IP rights are vital for businesses to stop bad actors from copying and infringing on their ideas.”

“A company’s brand is its most important investment, and trademark registration is a key aspect of protecting that brand,” said Antonio Turco, founding partner of CPST Law, which is part of the program. “The IP Accelerator elevates the importance of intellectual property” and will help SMBs obtain their rights under the law, he noted.

“For any small business, but particularly for one like mine … there is a significant risk of competitors copying or stealing your hard work,” said Jennifer Pratt, founder and owner of Seeding Square, the color-coded seed spacer for vegetable gardens. “As a small business owner, I have many urgent day-to-day priorities that can prevent me from pursuing complicated matters like trademark protection.” Per the news release, she said that she was “encouraged to see initiatives like IP Accelerator” and what they have to offer SMBs.

Amazon had earlier rolled out the IP Accelerator program in Germany, France, Spain, Italy, the U.K. and the Netherlands. The program launched in the United States in 2019.

Amazon Expands SMB Brand Protection Program To Canada …

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