Wednesday, 28 March 2012

North West Newcomer - Sweets, Tea or Pharmaceuticals

The North West Business Masters is an annual competition for the following awards:
  • North West Ambassador: Greatest contribution to business in the region
  • North West Newcomer: Best new business initiative. 
  • North West Pride: Most meaningful philanthropic initiative by a business, organisation or leader 
  • North West Innovator: Most creative product, idea or original business thinking 
  • North West Exporter: Recognising outstanding success in international markets
  • North West Manufacturer: The company leading the way in this critical sector.
The winners will be announced at a ceremony at the Midland Hotel on 26 April 2012.

The nominations for the "North West Newcomer" have just been announced (see "Vote Now for Your North West Newcomer" 28 March 2012 The Business Desk).  Interestingly, two of the three finalists are specialist food and drink businesses but one is a new pharmaceutical company.

The candidate that would get this blog's vote is Redx Pharma.  According to its website:
"Redx Pharma is a UK-based company developing new drug candidates using the broad-based potential of its innovative Redox Switch™ platform.
Our novel, validated approach allows Redx Pharma to progress new drug development programs with lower risk and greater speed to clinical trials."
Apparently the Redox Switch platform is a method of developing new products by preparing compounds that are structurally similar to existing ones. Apparently, this approach approach reduces time and costs and of course risk. Redx is apparently developing new cardiovascular, influenza, antibiotics and neuropathic pain products.

The other candidates are also interesting.   Goody Good Stuff is a confectioner with a range of natural gummy candy made without the use of gelatin.   Charbrew is a specialist merchant which was started by a young graduate from Newcastle University.

I congratulate all the nominees and wish them all the best of luck.

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Introducing IP to Freerange Artists in Carlisle

On 12 Dec 2011 I mentioned Freerange Artists of Carlisle ("Freerange: Creative Industries in Carlisle"). Yesterday, patent attorney Tom Hutchinson, Glasgow solicitor David Flint and  I paid them a visit and we were very impressed.

The reason for our visit was that we had been invited to present a seminar on IP.   This was very much like the one Tom, Michael Sandys and I gave to Manchester FabLab on 12 Oct 2011 ("FabLab Manchester: Introduction to Intellectual Property"). Freerange has got much of the equipment to be found in a FabLab and its director, Hannah Stewart, told me that it plans to open Carlisle's FabLab in the very near future. As Carlisle could soon be the Tijuana of England we decided it would be good to hear from a Scottish IP lawyer.

David did not disappoint. "What is the significance of 2012 for the people of Carlisle?" he began.  Everyone looked blank. Olympics? A sore topic in the North West as every right thinking person in Britain knows, they should have come to Manchester. Queen's Diamond Jubilee?  None of those.  "It is the 900th anniversary of the cession of Cumbria to England and the First Minister of Scotland has not forgotten you."  After we had recovered from this Caledonian irredentism  - which we hope was a joke - David took us through assignations, interdicts and productions with even more ease than the advocates pace Parliament House in Edinburgh.

Tom, as usual was excellent.   He gave us some good down to earth practical advice in "Practical Intellectual Property". As there had been some overlap between my introduction and Tom's last time I rewrote my "Introduction to IP" and prepared a handout,  I also listed some useful websites,
We had a very good audience representing some very interesting businesses ranging from photo booth hire to web design.  In particular, there were a lot of photographers who were keen to debate Judge Birss QC's decision in Temple Island.   Several had read my article "Copyright in Photographs: Temple Island Collections and Creation Records" IP.IT Update 15 Jan 2012 which has gone viral.

We hope this will be the first of many fruitful contacts with Freerange. Our next big event will be World IP Day on 26 April 2012. We hope to set up a regular IP clinic and inventors club and all sorts of forums in the centre,   Should anyone wish to discuss these projects, please call me on 0800 862 0055 or complete my contact form. You can also contact me through twitter,Facebook, Linkedin or Xing,