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Call for Application: Free Intellectual Property Advisory Services for Tech Start-UPS

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CM ADVOCATES aspires to be the premier legal and business advisory firm in Rwanda and within the East Africa Community (EAC), by providing our customers with a one-stop shop for their legal and business advisory needs and a world-class customer experience.


Rwanda has a rising number of innovators proposing solutions for multiple challenges. It is worth noting that most innovators make no considerable progress in securing their IP, especially due to a lack of knowledge and technical know-how. Competitors can essentially steal or piggyback on the innovators’ success to take away their market share.

Many tech start-ups do not realize that their IP assets are integral to their long-term viability and success. Intellectual Property (IP) Protection is fundamental for innovation to thrive as it rewards your creativity and can generate tangible benefits to your business.

Small tech start-ups mistakenly believe that exploiting their IP is time-consuming, expensive, and difficult to see a return on investment. On the contrary, any company irrespective of its size or the nature of its business should consider the importance of its IP assets.

The following facts remain unknown to or neglected by innovators:

  • Start-ups can use their IP as collateral to obtain financing for their business;
  • Companies generate revenues from their IP through licensing;
  • Companies that rely on IP generally succeed better than those that do not;
  • IP protection enables start-ups to have a competitive advantage on the market;

As such, CM Advocates Rwanda*, a premier full-service corporate legal and business advisory firm operating in Rwanda and the East African region, would like to call for applications for qualifying tech start-ups that are interested in being assisted with their IP and licensing needs to apply for this program. CM Advocates Rwanda will guide and advise a minimum of fifteen tech start-ups/SMEs that will be selected with the aim of addressing their IP and/or licensing challenges.

The services to be rendered to the start-ups include:

  1. Advisory on matters relating to trademark protection;
  2. Advisory on matters relating to patents and utility models;
  3. Trade Secrets management;
  4. Licenses (shared or otherwise);
  5. Advisory on matters relating to industrial designs
  6. Copyrights and related rights (acquisition, scope, maintenance, and use of the rights)

Why Register?

  • You will get guidance on the protection of your creations and inventions;
  • You will understand how your inventions and creations can be used to generate revenue;
  • You will learn how you can fight against infringement on your creations;
  • You will learn how you can turn creations of your mind into tangible assets capable of assignment and licensing.

How Do I Apply?

Interesting tech start-ups should submit their application documents to with the email subject “Intellectual Property and Licensing”. All submissions should be made no later than Wednesday, 20 October 2021.

They are required to submit the following application documents in soft copy as submission in hard is not allowed:

  1. A duly filled and signed application form (Click here to download the application form);
  2. Company registration certificate issued by the Rwanda Development Board.

Please feel free to contact us on +250 788 309 414 for any further clarification.