On Thursday, 18 April 2024, the Office of Technology Transfer in the Directorate of Community Engagement,Entrepreneurship Inclusive Innovation and Commercialisation (CE-EIIC), in collaboration with the School of Law in the Faculty of Management, Commerce and Law, hosted a hybrid World Intellectual Property (IP) Day Seminar. The seminar was held at the Research Conference Centre and online. The purpose of the seminar was to raise awareness about IP, where researchers and students could learn more about how IP laws impact our daily lives. This year’s World IP Day theme is – IP and the SDGs: Building our common future
with innovation and creativity. The Interim Director of the School of Law in the Faculty of Management, Commerce and Law at the University of Venda, Professor Lonias Ndlovu (on the photo above), when welcoming the guests, researchers, and students, highlighted the importance of IP and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – in accordance with this year’s theme. He also mentioned the University’s Strategic Objectives in alignment with the SDGs. In addition, he informed the gathering that he and other authors would launch the first-ever book on IP and the SDGs to celebrate this year’s World IP Day. The book titled The Elgar Companion to Intellectual Property and the Sustainable Development Goals (2024), published by Edward Elgar Publishing, a premier academic publisher in the United Kingdom, features his co-authored chapter
alongside others written by authors from Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, the United States and Canada. The Acting Senior Manager of Patents and Designs at the Companies and Intellectual Properties Commission (CIPC), Mr Mehluli Ncube (on the photo below – in the next page), began his presentation by setting out the mandate of CIPC, which includes the registration of companies, co-operatives, and IP rights. The CIPC plays a crucial role in enforcing relevant legislation, promoting compliance with financial reporting standards, and providing research and advice on national policy. Compliance with CIPC requirements is essential for businesses, and CIPC offers resources and assistance to support them.

He indicated that the CIPC oversees registrations related to IP rights like trademarks, patents, designs,and copyrights, ensuring legal protection over creative works or inventions. He said innovation increases
efficiency. He further set out the different forms or types of IP – patents, trademarks, copyright, designs, plant breeders’ rights and trade secrets. In his conclusion, he mentioned that complying with the requirements
set by the CIPC is crucial for businesses operating in South Africa.

The Founder and CEO of Global Health Biotech (PTY) LTD, Professor Keolebogile Motaung (on the photo above), began her presentation by thanking the University of Venda for inviting her to participate in the World IP Day 2024 Seminar. She pointed out that the importance of conducting postgraduate research is to take the research outputs to the market – to create an innovative society. IP generated at the University should benefit society by solving societal problems.
She pointed out that many people have innovative ideas but do not think about commercialisation – i.e., entrepreneurship. universities have excellent skills in training students and publishing research papers, but they lack skills in commercialisation and entrepreneurship. Therefore, there is a lack of entrepreneurial culture at universities, particularly among students. However, the Entrepreneurship Development in Higher Education (EDHE) is instilling the. She pointed out that there is a lack of entrepreneurial culture in our universities, but the EDHE is trying to help install the entrepreneurial culture in the universities, especially among the students. She also presented a case study on Global Health Biotech (PTY) LTD, a company she started from her research outputs with her postgraduate students. In her conclusion, she said we must set up entrepreneurship support programmes to provide training, mentorship, funding, and access to relevant networks.
The Executive Chairman of Nunnovation Africa Foundation (NAF), Mr Khathu Mashau (on the photo above), encouraged students to start thinking out of the box, i.e., when they have ideas, they must act on them immediately. This will help them know early whether the idea will work or not. He also told them about his journey in entrepreneurship, which started when he was a primary school learner – cutting grass on weekends to make money. He explained what NAF does, which includes providing industry-specific and inclusive innovation solutions through local, regional, and international collaborations. NAF has trained youths in Gauteng, some of whom have been deployed to various companies.

The Deputy Director and IP Attorney at the National Intellectual Property Management Office (NIPMO), Ms Tshimangadzo Munyai (on the left photo) , highlighted the importance of the World IP Day which is to raise awareness about the role of IP rights in fostering innovation and creativity. Celebrating World IP Day demonstrates the economic, technological, and cultural importance of IP and IP rights. This year’s theme for World IP Day – IP and SDGs: Building our Common Future with Innovation and Creativity, is very important as it addresses critical areas of concern. SDG 9 is crucial as it relates to industry innovation and infrastructure. In this regard, without technology and innovation, industrialisation will not happen, and without industrialisation, development will not happen. SDGs aim to end poverty and all forms of hunger, ensure healthy lives and promoting well-being for all. It also recognises the importance of inclusive and equitable quality education and aims to address inequalities specifically relating to gender and among countries.She also set out NIPMO’s mandate, which includes supporting HEIs and Research Councils in identifying and protecting IP emanating from publicly financed research and development. She further mentioned some of the offerings from
NIPMO, which can be found on the website. Adcock Ingram’s Public Affairs Executive, Nkosinathi Mthethwa (on the right photo in the previous page) set out Adcock Ingram’s commitment to good governance, values, and ethics. This includes the principles of transparency, integrity, and accountability in all their dealings with various stakeholders. He informed the audience about what Adcock Ingram does and how they use IP to protect their products and services. They use patents to protect  the products and their methods of manufacture. They use trademarks to distinguish their products from the competitors’ products and to ensure the quality of their products and services is not compromised. Registered designs protect the aesthetic appearance of their products and packaging. He mentioned that collaboration with UNIVEN can be discussed in another platform to see what shape such collaboration would take.

Issued by:
Department of Marketing, Branding and Communication
University of Venda
Cell: 082 868 2218 or 082 868 1811

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