Aluko & Oyebode commemorated this year’s World Intellectual Property Day with a forum themed: “Reach for Gold: Intellectual Property and Sports”. This forum was organised in collaboration with the American Business Council, Lagos Chamber of Commerce International Arbitration Centre (LACIAC) and the Anti-Counterfeiting Collaboration (ACC) of Nigeria. The event speakers from the sports and business community, sports supporters, the media etc. The event was sponsored by The Coca-Cola Company Nigeria.
The speakers include:
- Uche Nwokocha – Partner, Aluko & Oyebode
- Nta Ekpiken – Senior Associate, Aluko & Oyebode
- Funmilayo Iyayi – Chief Executive Officer, Lagos Chamber of Commerce International Arbitration Centre (LACIAC)
- Nkechi Obi – Chairperson, Sports Industry Thematic Group of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group
- Fred Edoreh– President, Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, Lagos State
- Felix Awogu – General Manager, SuperSport West Africa
- Ojonoka Agudah – Project Manager, Integral Nigeria
- Tunji Brown – Owu Sportswear
- Akinyelu Olajide – Gbagada Football Club
- Adeola Desmond – Head of Brand Protection for Unilever Africa & Chairman of Anti Counterfeit Collaboration of Nigeria (ACC).
- Margaret Olele – Chief Executive Officer, American Business Council
- Tanya Hill –Intellectual Property (ICHP) Development Assistance Programme at the US Embassy
- Jennifer Woods – Senior International Trade Specialist at U.S. Department of Commerce
- Kevin Omuojine – President, Abuja Metro FC (Moderator)
The aim of the forum was to take a closer look at intellectual property and its influence on the development, growth, performance, business and enjoyment of sports. It is easy to miss the fact that several sport business relationships are rooted in Intellectual Property. Such relationships range from broadcasting license agreements to endorsements and sponsorships.
Across the globe, the sports industry has experienced prolific growth, which has been attributed to the monetization of sports content, merchandizing and sponsorship. The world has witnessed the evolution of sports from a mere recreational activity to an extremely lucrative business which has contributed immensely to economies of various nations.
Several sports teams and players have become globally and commercially viable due to their affiliation with big brands. However, in Nigeria, little to no attention has been given to the lucrative side of the world of sports. Sports practitioners in Nigeria are yet to fully exploit and monetize intellectual property.
World Intellectual Property (IP) Day was founded by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in 2000. Its main objective is to raise awareness on the importance of the various forms of intellectual property and its impact in our daily lives.
Each year, WIPO announces different themes which are aimed at mobilizing various IP stakeholders across the world. The theme for the year is Reach for Gold: IP and Sports.