Intellectual Property Issues Case Study

Topics: Business plan, Management, Strategic management Pages: 6 (1718 words) Published: September 28, 2012
This report will discuss a case study that mainly comprises intellectual property issues. The report will focus to answer the questions in the case study, Mcdonald Muckraker. Areas generally examine are the problems that they face currently and problems in the foreseeable future and lastly solutions for the potential problems.

What are the problems currently? What have they done wrong? Identify the problems. Lack of market and product research
Many entrepreneurs do not realise the importance of developing a marketing approach in laying the foundation for a new venture (Frederick & Kuratko, 2010). In the same vein the president of Onswitch LLC, Nancy ( highlighted that Entrepreneurs are often so passionate about their ideas, and inconsiderate in giving time to do a thorough research. In the case of Muckraker, Jenny and Garry design the product according to their own needs without any market research. Thus, the way it operates might not fulfil the customers’ need and the design might not attract, which leads to less demand for Muckraker. Another area that they have overlooked is product research. They did not examine the products that the competitors offer, life-cycle of competitors’ products and whether their product need to be quite different from the current offering to be successful. Ignorance of legal and regulatory issues.

The business is subject to many legal and regulatory requirements, mainly the necessity for patents, trademark and copyrights to protect one’s invention and products. When legal and regulatory issues are overlooked, major problems can result (Frederick & Kuratko, 2010). In the case of Muckraker, the combination of agricultural techniques may lead to face the problem of copyright. According to Australian Copyright Act 1968, individuals are fined up to $ 50,000 and the possible term of imprisonment up to five years ( In addition, the design of the device looks similar to leaping deer logo which John Deere used in his agricultural equipment. According to Australian IP policy, John can take court action to enforce his IP rights. In Australia there are cases filed regarding this matter. For instance an Australian designer took court action over a retail outlet, because she noticed that direct copy of her designs were appearing on that shop ( Thus, there is a risk to McDonald that John might take the court action. No business plan

McDonald has overlooked the most important areas of a start-up business, which is the business plan. Strategic business plan and its implementation are the heart and soul of any business. However , Mcdonal did not have any written business plan. Thus, they might face problems like not targeting to the right customers and since no cost of production has been estimated, they might face problem like underestimating the cost and involve a high production cost, which might be not feasible to produce (Perry, 2001). In addition they might have problem in seeking funding due to over look of financial area like how additional finance can be obtained (Kuratko & Frederick, 2010)? 2.1 QUESTION 1 PART: II

What they have done wrong?
The risk of not protecting the idea.
Jenny and Garry might face a high risk by lending it for Clarrie, without protecting their idea. Since he is interested in it, he might register the idea under his name before McDonald. According to Australia IP regulation, if a person demonstrate, sell or discuss their invention in public before they file, they may not get a patent, and in this case McDonald might lost their innovation ( If they want to discuss with Clarrie, they could have signed a confidentiality agreement before they lend it to Clarrie ( 3.0 QUESTION 2

What problems will they have in the foreseeable future?
Difficult to get investors
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