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Novagraaf and Authenticateit partner to combat counterfeits

12-05-2014

Leading intellectual property (IP) consultancy, the Novagraaf Group, announced today that it had signed an agreement with Authenticateit, an Australian company that offers a powerful new system to enable consumers and brands to work together to identify and stop the sale of counterfeit products.

Stopping fake goods from entering the legitimate supply chain
Counterfeiting poses an increasing challenge to brand owners and economies, both online and on the high street. The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) estimates that by 2015, the value of counterfeit goods could exceed US$1.77 trillion globally, impacting both businesses and their consumers. Already, counterfeiting is said to represent 5-7% of world trade, worth an estimated $600 billion a year, and the ICC further estimates that approximately 250 million jobs worldwide have been lost as a direct result of counterfeiting. With many fake goods now also entering the legitimate supply chain, there is a clear and urgent need for more sophisticated brand protection and anti-counterfeiting strategies and solutions.

Stepping up to the challenge
Novagraaf strongly believes that brand owners and consumers need to work together to identify and stop the sale of counterfeit products in the retail sector. To help achieve this, we have partnered with Australian innovator Authenticateit. It has developed a pioneering track-and-trace system to help both brand owners and their customers to protect and ensure the authenticity of their goods.

We have chosen to partner with Authenticateit because we now have a tool to stop the sale of counterfeit and unsafe products in the retail sector,” said Novagraaf’s CEO Lutgarde Liezenberg on the announcement of the new partnership. “The tool will become an essential part of the purchase process for consumers and in turn, drive demand for brands to comply.”

Authenticateit founder, Gennady Volchek added: “Novagraaf and Authenticateit have been in close dialogue since our foundation and we are very excited to be working together to introduce companies to the latest, leading industry standard in serialisation, consumer safety, product traceability and brand protection. With the latest advancements at Authenticateit, the humble barcode is also set to become a powerful marketing tool. We look forward to working with brands to develop new ways to engage consumers through our revolutionary consumer communicator marketing platform.”

Barcode verification
The track-and-trace system is accompanied by a front-end smartphone application that is free for consumers to download. The app allows consumers and other interested parties to inspect the product’s origins and authenticity simply by scanning its barcode. To be eligible, products need to be serialised with a GS1 DataBar or a Datamatrix, a global and commonly-accepted standard for barcodes. Once stitched onto labels or printed onto the product or its packaging, these unique product identifiers (UPI) will enable consumers to quickly scan an item to check for authenticity before proceeding to purchase.

In addition, as each UPI can only be assigned to a single product and each product can only be classified as being in one location at any one time, any attempt by would-be counterfeiters seeking to copy or reuse a UPI will be easily identified. Indeed, if a product does not match its description or intended destination, then the potential customer will receive an instant notification that the product cannot be authenticated and deterred from proceeding with the transaction. This provides a useful first line of defence in the war against counterfeit products.

Cost benefits and added insight for brand owners
Any negative result will trigger an alert to brand owners, providing a pinpoint to the precise location of the anomaly (via Google Maps) and enabling them to take immediate action to stop, disable or neutralise unauthorised imports or counterfeit operations at their point of sale. The tool also provides brand owners important insight by:

  • Tracking and identifying counterfeits and parallel imports / grey markets
  • Serialising products for track, trace and authentication
  • Compliance with directive or mandatory traceability requirements
  • Capturing product and customer insights
  • Stimulating interaction with consumers
  • Offering consumers product safety and recall advise
  • Building trust and confidence among consumers
  • Making it clear to counterfeiters that fake products won’t be tolerated
  • Integration with World Customs Organization IPM tool

About Novagraaf
Headquartered in the Netherlands, the Novagraaf Group has offices throughout Europe in Intellectual Property hotspots such as Amsterdam, Brussels, Geneva, London and Paris. One of Europe’s leading IP consulting groups, Novagraaf specialises in the protection and global management of IP rights, such as trademarks, patents, domain names, designs and copyright, including identifying abuse and acting decisively on infringement. With more than 350 IP professionals across 14 offices, Novagraaf provides IP services on all strategic issues.

About Authenticateit
Authenticateit Pty Ltd is an Australian company headquartered in Melbourne, Victoria. Established as a start up in 2011, Authenticateit has successfully launched services with a number of Australian brands in 2013. Authenticateit is the first system of its kind, operating in full compliance with industry standards including EPCIS. Authenticateit offers brand owners an effective way to track, trace and deter counterfeits and instances of unauthorised distribution as they occur. For consumers, the free Authenticateit smartphone app provides access to product recall data, an authenticity check and useful product information simply by scanning the product’s barcode. More info on http://authenticateit.com.