Tata Technologies

Headquarters: Singapore; Pune, India

Industry sector: Computer software, engineering & construction

Industrial powerhouse Tata has interests in sectors as diverse as insurance, luxury furnishings, automotive and publishing. Tata Technologies is its engineering and design service provider, set up in 1994 to help expand the group’s international footprint. The company’s IP function was established in 2006, with a mandate to secure protection for key brands and proprietary software codes. Patenting is also a growing focus: most of the patents in its still-modest portfolio were filed in the last two years and many more are in the pipeline. The company is also enhancing its know-how through strategic acquisitions - it recently bought US-based engineering services provider Cambric Corporation for $32.5 million in a deal aimed at strengthening its systems engineering and design capabilities. Tata Technologies was quick to recognise that one of the major problems preventing Indian companies from competing effectively on the global market is their limited understanding of intellectual property. It has tackled this head-on through a comprehensive programme designed to promote IP awareness across all strata of the organisation. One such initiative aimed at engineers, scientists and other R&D employees is a quarterly comic strip, with storylines based on everyday IP issues that these personnel might encounter. At the top tier of the company, the head of IP regularly liaises with the C-suite to keep them on message and facilitate IP discussions in the boardroom. The company has announced plans to move into China, South Africa and Mexico, making the protection of the Tata brand overseas is a key concern.