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A Testament of Singapore’s FinTech Fast Track (FTFT) Initiative

The first patent using the FinTech Fast Track Initiative (“FTFT”) was recently granted by the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (“IPOS”) to Voyager Innovations Inc., a Philippines-based company that focuses on the delivery and development of digital technology services.

The FTFT is a program designed to assist Financial Technology (“FinTech”) enterprises within the region to get their products or services protected in a shorter span of time (instead of the usual 2 -4 years). Such IPOS innovations have contributed to Singapore being ranked as the best in Asia and fourth in the world for having the best IP protection, according to the latest 2017/2018 World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report.

One of the first participants in this brand new initiative was Voyager Innovations Inc. Their patent application was filed on 16th May 2018, merely three (3) weeks after the launch. After about 7 months, on 30th November 2018, Singapore had its first FinTech patent granted under the FTFP.

The patented invention of Voyager Innovations Inc. primarily relates to a system and method for determining an outcome associated with an event. The event may include a prize draw, raffle and/or lottery, to determine the outcome, for example, draw at least one winner. In particular, it is built using a distributed ledger technology that allows users to participate in real-time events regardless of their physical attendance at the event through an application in a mobile device and it utilizes the combination of location sensing data and motion sensing data associated with the movement or tilt of the user’s mobile devices in order to determine the outcome of the event.

Apart from the accelerated service, IPOS has also maintained its quality of examination regardless of its speed of delivery. The prosecution history of Voyager Innovations Inc.’s patent obtained from the IPOS’ Patents Open Dossier system indicates that the patent had undergone a full substantive examination before being granted. This shows that the patent examiners in Singapore are qualified and well-equipped to handle such fast-tracked examinations.

According to IPOS, the FTFT Initiative will operate for a period of 12 months and will terminate on 26th April 2019. However, considering the success IPOS has seen with its accelerated service for FinTech inventions and whatever traction it may gain in terms of its popularity, it may very well become a permanent fixture at IPOS.

It is a testament of IPOS’ successful implementation of its IP initiatives.

By: Denise Mirandah and Jehanna Huerto

This article first appeared in the GALA Gazette Vol 14, Issue 1. For more information, please visit https://www.galalaw.com/Publication/publication.