Heading to #LabelExpo2019
We are getting ready to head to LabelExpo 2019 in Brussels and we are pretty excited to be showing off our new functioning prototype once we get there. Last year at this time, we could only share our design specs under NDA and we were still looking for a converter partner to complete the R&D needed to create our first prototype. What a difference a year makes!
The timeline for a new product is often measured in years, and in fact, it was in 2016 that Invaluable Inventions first filed a patent for a self-shredding label designed specifically to protect private information or PII (personally identifiable information.) Despite the positive interest in the product concept, we had not been able to find a viable label converter to move forward with R&D until this spring when we began working with an industry innovator, Cellotape.
The patent landscape has changed drastically in the past 25 years and now inventors are being asked to develop their ideas further than before – previously a concept with a patent may have been enough to secure a partnership or licensing deal, nowadays it’s common for companies to want to see a functional prototype prior to discussing terms further.
Since last year’s LabelExpo in Chicago, we have finalized our patents, so our concept is fully protected and public. That simplifies the process for discussing options with potential partners. Since we no longer need an NDA to share details, we are able to fast track talks with interested companies. Some may wonder if traditional tradeshows are an effective way to connect with potential partners. Do people still go to tradeshows? While it may vary by industry, in our experience it is still an excellent way to network with new contacts, meet face to face with companies we may have only engaged with online, and keep a pulse on industry trends.
Last year our goal was to find the right R&D partner. We’ve had conversations with over a dozen companies and the typical conversation goes something like this:
1. “Wow, that’s a great idea!”
2. “We need to sit down with our R&D team to see if it’s feasible”
3. “We spoke to R&D and they think it may be too hard and too time consuming to execute. Best of luck!”
The people we met and the conversations we had following LabelExpo 2018 eventually led us to Cellotape. Cellotape did not shy away from a challenge, and in fact, their R&D team immediately began the process of evaluating exactly what we needed to make our idea work. The results were amazing. I had set my expectations low, but I was thrilled when the first iteration of the prototype worked flawlessly. It performed just as it looked in our concept animations.
We are excited to show these samples around at LabelExpo 2019 – we think this new product will make a significant splash at the show. We want to give credit to Jim Doss and the Cellotape R&D squad who fearlessly took on the “impossible” and made it possible, and to the entire Invaluable Inventions team who have been with us for the last three years, bringing this innovative product concept to reality.
If you are interested in learning more about Invaluable Inventions’ patent portfolio or our consulting services to help entrepreneurs manage the patent and product development process, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.