European Patent Office Annual Report 2018


15. March 2019
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EPO EPO EPO

By José Santacroce, Partner & Head of Patent Department
 
The European Patent Office (EPO) recently published its Annual Report 2018.
The main statistics and trends are highlighted below.
European patent applications continued to grow in 2018, reaching 174 317 applications, that is +4.6% with respect to last year.
Large enterprises filed 71% of the last year´s patent applications, SMEs, individual inventors: 20% and universities and public research organizations: 9%.
127 625 patents were granted last year (+20.8% with respect to 2017), 45% of them were granted to EPO member states, US: 24%, Japan: 17%, Korea: 5% and China: 4%.
The opposition rate in 2018 was 3.2%; the decisions in opposition cases were as follows: patent revoked: 27%, patent maintained in amended form: 42% and patent maintained as granted: 31%.
The top 10 countries with the most European patent applications in 2018 were the following:

  • US 43 612 (25%)
  • Germany 26 734 (15%)
  • Japan 22 615 (13%)
  • France 10 317 (6%)
  • China 9 401 (5%)
  • Switzerland 7 927 (5%)
  • Korea 7 296 (4%)
  • Netherlands 7 140 (4%)
  • Great Britain 5 736 (3%)
  • Italy 4 399 (3%)

The top 20 applicants in 2018 were the following:

  • Siemens 2493
  • Huawei 2485
  • Samsung 2449
  • LG 2376
  • United Technologies 1983
  • Philips 1617
  • Qualcomm 1593
  • Ericsson 1472
  • General Electric 1307
  • Bosch 1286
  • Sony 1278
  • BASF 1256
  • Intel 1057
  • Johnson & Johnson 982
  • Microsoft 975
  • Canon 816
  • Panasonic 815
  • Valeo 784
  • Alphabet 779
  • Nokia739

The top 10 fields of technology in 2018 were the following:

  • Medical technology 13 795
  • Digital communication 11 940
  • Computer technology 11 718
  • Electrical machinery, apparatus, energy 10 722
  • Transport 9 039
  • Measurement 8 744
  • Pharmaceuticals 7 441
  • Biotechnology 6 742
  • Other special machines 6 379
  • Organic chemistry 6 233

 
 Source: http://www.epo.org

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