Gambling and alcohol giants beat out Australia’s national science agency and universities in patent and trademark filings last year, as local filings fell, and the nation remained overwhelmingly a “net importer” of technology.

Patents allow the holder to exclusively exploit their invention and are often used as a measure of overall innovation. It is an imperfect measure but a useful one, according to experts.

The latest report also reveals applications by Australian applicants account for only 7.7 per cent of total filings in 2022. In other words, more than nine in every 10 patents filed in Australia last year were from an overseas applicant.

The share of non-resident patent filings in Australia is among the highest in the world.

The latest report shows that on average, businesses that register IP rights are more productive than other businesses, with up to 30 per cent higher productivity with a patent or design right. Additional trademark filings are also linked to an 8 per cent increase in revenue per employee. Small and medium Australian organisations holding a patent tend to pay their employees more and hold on to them for longer.

Australia’s IP holding businesses have an outsized impact on GDP, employment, R&D, and exports.

Based on filing and trademark applications the biggest innovators and brand protectors in Australia are again gaming and alcohol giants, respectively.

Aristocrat Technologies filed the most patents in Australia among local organisations. With 69 filings, the gaming giant beat out the CSIRO (51), Monash University (24), renewable energy inventor Thanh Tri Lam (24) and software giant Canva (23).

Endeavour Group limited (116) beat out Aristocrat (112) for the most trademark filings, followed by Pharmacor (63) and Sportsbet (44).

By this measure, the prominence of gambling and drinking organisations is “quite striking” and would surprise most Australians, Professor Christie said.

Deakin University IP expert Dr Tyrone Berger is not surprised at the return of Aristocrat either.

“There could be several factors: they are an innovative company looking to protect their IP, or on closer examination, they could be ‘evergreening’,” he told

“Put simply, evergreening is extending the scope of protection on their existing IP.”

Filing dozens of patents every year suits the gaming giant rather than it necessarily being the most innovative company, he says, because it is “churning out hundreds of gaming machines each year”.

“With each new machine or ‘new look’ the company may take the view it needs to protect its IP against copying or competitors in the same space.”


Read the full article here >>> Australian patent filings led by gambling and drinks companies (