Software protection in Brazil and Mexico

GIS – Gestão Integrada de Seguros, is a Portugal-based SME with more than 30 years of experience in the development and commercialization of software products for the insurance market. GIS enjoys a well-established commercial and implementation network which extends to Spain, France, Poland and Portuguese-speaking African countries.

Attracted by Latin America as a key market for its software products and services, GIS decided to expand its business to Mexico and Brazil, by means of local partnership.

Supported by the in-house legal expert, the Portuguese SME applied for trademark protection in Brazil (trademark and IP protection strategies were EU based only) and started negotiations with potential local partners, but several problems arose, such as:

  • Tricky local regulation
  • IP Rights registration backlog
  • High software importation taxes
  • Very slow response time by the Brazilian IP Office
  • The requirement of the Brazilian local partner to get access to the full source code instead of just getting access to the part of the code that requires adjustments for its implementation in the Brazilian market

The miscommunication and lack of follow-through by both parties leaded to the suspension of the negotiations by the Brazilian partner until the Trademark was granted.