Patents and Patent Facilitators in Kenya

A patent is an exclusive right granted for an invention, providing the patent holder with the ability to take legal action against others who use, sell, or make the invention without permission. In Kenya, patents are overseen by the Kenya Industrial Property Institute (KIPI).

Applying for a Patent in Kenya

  1. Confirm the Patentability of your Invention: Not all inventions can be patented. To be eligible for a patent in Kenya, your invention must be new, involve an inventive step, and be industrially applicable.

  2. Prepare a Patent Application: This includes a detailed description of the invention, claims that define the protection sought, and drawings where necessary. You may wish to hire a patent attorney to assist with this process, although this is not mandatory.

  3. Submit Your Application to KIPI: You can submit your patent application to KIPI either in person or by mail.

Apply for a Patent with KIPI

Patent Facilitators

There are several organizations and professionals that can help you navigate the patent process:

  1. Patent Attorneys: Patent attorneys specialize in patent law and can help prepare and file your patent application, represent you in patent disputes, and provide advice on patentability and infringement issues.

  2. Innovation Hubs and Incubators: Some innovation hubs and incubators provide support and advice on patenting and other intellectual property issues. One such organization is the iHub Nairobi, which provides a range of services for startups, including mentorship, networking, and training.

  3. WIPO Kenya Office: The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has an office in Kenya that can provide advice and assistance on various intellectual property matters, including patents.

WIPO Kenya Office

  1. Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO): While primarily focused on copyrights, KECOBO provides some resources and guidance on other intellectual property issues, including patents.

Kenya Copyright Board

Remember, obtaining a patent can be a complex process and may require a considerable investment of time and resources. It’s important to carefully consider whether seeking a patent is the best strategy for your business, and to seek advice from qualified professionals if you are unsure.

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