Trademark application growth lowest in a decade(WIPO data reveals)

· 1 WIPO data shows slowest trademark application growth since 2012

· 2 65% of filings come from top five offices, non-residents increasingly active

· 3 Research and technology leading sector during pandemic

Global trademark filing activity increased 4% last year to reach 13.9 million applications, according to WIPO’s World Intellectual Property Indicators 2022 report. Application class counts (a metric used to harmonise differences in filing systems across national and regional offices) also grew 5.5% to 18.1 million.


But the rate of growth has slowed to its lowest in at least a decade. The last time that trademark applications increased less than 4% was in 2009, when filings dropped -1.4% in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis. Meanwhile, last year’s 5.5% increase in class count is the second lowest of the past 10 years. Only 2012 saw a smaller increase (up 5.3%).


Admittedly, the application class count rose only 5.7% in 2019, but last year saw a 16.4% surge despite the onset of the covid-19 pandemic and the ensuing global economic slowdown. If trademark applications are an indicator of business confidence, then the 2021 figures reflect an ever more turbulent economic climate. The 2020 bounce-back was short lived, and we are not out of the woods.