The MAPI (abbreviation for „Hungarians on the market”) club’s latest event was held on the 14th of November 2019, under the name of „International branding and the protection of industrial property” at JULIUS-K9®’s headquarters in Szigetszentmiklós.
The first presentation was delivered by JULIUS-K9®’s brand owner, Julius Sebő who put great emphasis on talking about the difference in case law regarding protection of industrial property in both Hungary and the European Union. He also talked about the markedly distinct case law that makes it significantly harder to take successful and effective action against offenders in Hungary. Furthermore, he pointed out, that behind the international success of the brand, there is a strategy that can be applied and put into practice regardless of company size. He also stated that he would like to use his own experience of this area to help his fellow entrepreneurs’ ventures abroad.
The second presentation by Gyula Pomázi, the president of the National Intellectual Property Office (SZTNH), pointed out that in order to further increase the Hungarian economy’s competitiveness, it is important to increase the added value of domestically owned enterprises, especially considering how little domestic added value there is in Hungarian exports. He also explained that in his view, it is disappointing that a significant proportion of SME’s in the market are not aware of the potential of innovation. He believes that an appropriate change of approach is required in order to advance.
In connection to intellectual property infringement, Gyula Pomázi also talked about how those who are entitled to protection of their creative work face numerous difficulties during enforcement, one aspect of which is the length of criminal proceedings. He also expressed his concern about how the prosecutor’s office lacks signs of sufficient empathy in this area of law. In light of that, he also pointed out that prosecution for offences of a violent nature are hardly ever prosecuted.
The third presentation was delivered by József Farkas, who is CEO of Sanatmetal Ltd, a medium-sized enterprise that creates trauma surgery, orthopaedic, and spinal surgery products. The presentation highlighted the fact, that, with the underlying intention of supplying Eurasia, they consider their new factory built in Russia in 2018 to be a major step forward. The director also made it clear that although branding is successful on an international level, and they have had good business results, they are in fact lagging behind others in terms of registered rights and counterfeiting.
József Farkas was followed by Ferenc Molnár, the founder of Ilcsi Szépítő Füvek Biokozmetikai Ltd. Following a brief history of the company – that started in the 1950’s with the work of Aunt Ilcsi” – he went on to explain that Ilcsi products are currently being used in 40 different countries. It has been the goal from the very beginning to produce all products exclusively in Hungary, while preserving Hungarian values. Ilcsi products are professional natural cosmetics that are all made from certified Hungarian organic herbs, fruits and vegetables and sales are for professional cosmetics only; they are not available for retail purchase. Nothing proves this success story better than the fact that Ilcsi received the Hungarikum trademark on the 16th of May 2014.
Following the lectures, the prominent participants held a constructive roundtable conversation with Zsombor Esőssy, chairman of the club. The conversation was also joined by Dr. Árpád Papp-Váry, vice president of the Hungarian Marketing Association. The participants expressed their views individually and communicated with the audience by responding to the mediator’s questions. The discussion included topics such as infringement, criminal law, innovative industrial policy, trade and marketing, brand names and values, as well as prospects for the future.