Man pulling various bags on wheels

Db Equipment has secured international rights to its sports bags and bags

Db Equipment develops a series of bags, rucksacks and bags adapted to sportsmen. The bags have been developed for transporting skis, snowboards and surfboards, and are practical and space-saving when not in use. The founders of the company thought early on about securing rights to the products in a global market.

In 2009, Norwegian engineering student Truls Brataas and Swedish freeski legend Jon Olsson met while surfing in the village of Hoddevik, Norway. Both were passionate about action sports. They traveled a lot, but couldn't find good luggage solutions to take their surfboards, snowboards and skis with them. This was a problem they believed they could solve together.

After a lot of work, they developed a ski bag unlike anything the world had ever seen. It was length-adjustable, foldable, light and strong. They needed a name for the product. Jon asked fans on Youtube, "What should we call our new bag company?" They got a lot of answers, but one name kept coming up...Douchebags. They knew they only had one chance to make this company work and had to be bold and find a memorable name. So the name of Truls Brataas and Jon Olsson's new bag company was decided – Douchebags. Later they changed to Db, as a result of the brand having matured and because they wanted to invest in the USA.

Different rights

They have a portfolio of over 20 registrations, divided into technical patents, design protection and brand registration. The rights are global and they have entered national phases in the central markets.

The IPR strategy came into place early on

The company has had an IPR strategy since the start of the company in 2011. The idea has been that it has been important to have room to play as a small Norwegian player in a global market.

– In the initial phase, the rights were important to give us room to develop the company, without an actor taking the market away from us by copying our innovations. Now that the company is bigger, the rights are important to crack down on blue copies and copies of our innovations both nationally and internationally.

Closeup image of a man

Truls Brataas

Founder Db Equipment

- In retrospect, it has turned out that these investments have yielded a large return in the form of being able to protect our rights even when we have grown. Today we have a global IPR strategy where we have strategic protection in all our largest markets, says Truls Brataas, founder of the company.

The company has several times experienced copying or that someone has violated their rights. This has most often happened in their international markets, but also in Norway by serious and non-serious players. - As we have ours in place, we have been able to protect our rights in all situations, both nationally and internationally, says Brataas.

Assistance from the patent office

The founders prepared the first applications in collaboration with NTNU, where they received assistance through their network. After this, they have always had assistance through a patent office, and they have collaborated with Acapo for many years.

In the initial phase, they also received some assistance from the instrument apparatus for IPR work.

Good advice for other businesses

- In this context, I would say that it is important that the IPR strategy supports the company strategy. It quickly becomes expensive if you don't focus on this field, concludes Brataas.

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