Madison Marcus | The Secret Sauce - Can you protect your competitive edge? - Madison Marcus

The Secret Sauce – Can you protect your competitive edge?

Author: Stephen Jenkins, Partner – Intellectual Property

In every business, there is a way, a process, information or a method which helps the business be successful. It does not have to be ground breaking new technology but it does help give the business a competitive edge in the marketplace, or assists in driving the profitability and sustainability of the business.

Your successful edge may be in sales, credit control, finance, business processes or a litany of other operational activities that, of themselves, do not lend to traditional forms of protection of intellectual property such as Trade Marks, Patents and Registered Designs. However, they are just as important and have been developed exclusively for the business. Their value is irreplaceable and the question we are often asked at Madison Marcus is how do I protect them?

As Colonel Sander’s “secret herbs and spices” has shown, protecting the “secret sauce” of your business is just as valuable intellectual property as the next ground breaking software. Confidential information and Trade Secrets are the most overlooked but valuable intellectual property to your company. The key steps in protecting it are:

    i. Conduct a review of your business information and processes to identify what has been created by the business and its people;
    ii. Catalogue this information into a central repository;
    iii. Identify who, and to what level of access, should be provided to staff within your business to this information;
    iv. Review all employment contracts to make sure appropriate confidential and restraint of trade clauses are included; and
    v. Utilise confidentiality agreements when dealing with contractors and other third-parties outside the business.

Protecting your client base, pricing policies, business processes, strategic plans and marketing ideas is critical to the continued success of any business and should be a priority for all business owners.
We at Madison Marcus know how to identify, catalogue and protect this intellectual property. For more information, please contact:


Stephen Jenkins
Partner – Intellectual Property
+61 437 008 253

Madison Marcus Law Firm produced this article. It is intended to provide general information in summary form on legal topics, current at the time of first publication. The contents do not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. Formal legal advice should be sought in particular matters.

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