ACID (Anti Copying in Design), the organisation committed to protecting intellectual property rights, is joining forces with the furniture’s industry’s political lobbying group, the British Furniture Confederation (BFC) as an associate member.
Martin Jourdan, chairman of the BFC said: “We are delighted to welcome ACID as an associate member of the BFC. Encouraging good design and protecting intellectual property rights are key elements of our five year Strategy Plan and close links with ACID will mean that we can double our knowledge and effectiveness in this area.”
The BFC Strategy Plan states the group’s commitment to supporting improvements in UK design rights legislation and IP protection; improving global design rights protection; ensuring that government and its agencies do not fall into the trap of purchasing design copies from less scrupulous suppliers; and promoting UK design both at home and overseas.
ACID’s CEO Dids Macdonald said: “ACID has always enjoyed very strong ties with all sectors associated with the British furniture industry. I see this as an excellent opportunity to raise further awareness about the key role which intellectual property plays in contributing to growth in the UK economy. Having the BFC’s support is timely, coinciding with the current Hargreaves 1 review of intellectual property commissioned by David Cameron, and will strengthen the arguments for improving design law”.
The BFC was set up by the Worshipful Company of Furniture Makers (WCFM) to bring together furniture industry trade associations and membership bodies – including the British Contract Furnishing Association (BCFA), the National Bed Federation (NBF), the Furniture Industry Research Association (FIRA), the Association of Master Upholsterers and Soft Furnishers (AMUSF), the Interiors Designers Association (IDA) and the industry training agency, Proskills – with the principle aim of engaging with government at all levels regarding matters of concern within the furniture, bed and furnishing industry. The BFC employs the services of political consultants Politics Direct to advise it on government activity, facilitate lobbying and to provide the secretariat of the All Party Parliamentary Furniture Group, chaired by Stevenage MP Stephen McPartland.
More than 1,000 companies, including many furniture manufacturers and designers, are members of ACID, which is committed to raising awareness and encouraging respect for intellectual property. The ACID logo is recognised as a strong symbol of deterrence. ACID accredited law firms have recovered over £3million in costs and damages in nearly 450 settlements for members and managed over 2,000 mediations, less than 30% of which have required further legal intervention.