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IACC Steps Up Brand Protection Assistance to SMEs with SME Task Force and Ambassador

March 2, 2021

Small businesses are the lifeblood of the global economy. In the U.S., for example, they create two-thirds of net new jobs and drive U.S. innovation and competitiveness. Meanwhile, SMEs represent 99% of all businesses in the European Union and 96% of all businesses in Asia. At the IACC, we recognize that today’s start-ups, small businesses, and entrepreneurs may very well become the world’s most well-known of tomorrow.  Growing an SME into a global brand takes hard work, dedication, and resources; and sometimes it takes some outside help. 

Furthering our commitment to helping SMEs fight fakes, we launched a new SME Task Force, which will draw upon the collective experience and expertise of our Small- and Medium-Sized member companies to guide the IACC in developing practical brand protection programs and resources.  The group recently held its first meeting and will soon begin work to aid in our creation of a resource guide and webinar series with a focus on SMEs.  In addition, the Task Force will provide a forum for SMEs to share their perspectives and best practices, as well as to support each other.

These are just the latest steps in our ongoing efforts to act upon SME’s needs. In October 2019, the IACC’s Board of Directors unanimously approved the creation of a new membership category to facilitate the participation of smaller brands in the organization.  Our discussions with these new members have served to highlight the unique challenges faced by SMEs and the need for more targeted assistance to help smaller businesses grow and protect their brands.

We’ve also appointed Fanxing “Ricky” Zhao to serve as the organization’s new SME Ambassador in addition to his role as Senior Analyst for the IACC MarketSafe Program. Fanxing has been a key member of the IACC MarketSafe team for the past four years and has worked closely with numerous SMEs in that capacity.  In his expanded role, he will leverage that experience to provide valuable support to the new Task Force.     

“There’s no ‘one size fits all’ solution to brand protection,” said IACC President, Bob Barchiesi.  “I’m pleased with the steps we’ve taken to date to help SMEs – the creation of a new membership category and leadership roles for smaller businesses; providing free access for SMEs to the IACC MarketSafe Program, and now, the launch of our new SME Task Force and appointment of an SME Ambassador.  Rest assured though, there is more to be done; and the IACC will be side by side with SMEs in the fight against fakes.”

To learn more about membership for SMEs – click here.

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