Innovative Company Mercene Labs: “Patents Are the Core of Our Business”

3 June, 2024

With several successful products in surface treatments for industrial applications on the market, there’s no doubt: patents are key for the passionate innovation company Mercene Labs.
– From the start, we have consciously and strategically invested in protecting our innovations. The collaboration with European Patent Attorney Fredrik Carlsson has been very beneficial, and recently Ström & Gulliksson successfully defended one of our most important patents against an opposition, says the company’s CEO Fredrik Carlborg.

The founders’ enthusiasm is unmistakable when they talk about their innovation:

– Our innovation in a nutshell is a smart way to use UV light of certain wavelengths to make industrial surface treatments adhere directly to difficult substrates. This means that solvents or other aggressive chemicals are not needed. We have identified a problem area that many manufacturers have and, through successful experiments, found unique but simple solutions.

Today, the company’s current customers include major manufacturers of high-quality furniture panels, and a typical application is surfaces in premium kitchens.

– We have delivered UV-activated surface treatments to over 20 million square meters of furniture panels. We are now facing an exciting period with the goal of launching new products and significantly increasing our sales.

Strategic Patent Strategy Sets the Direction

With around forty patents and numerous applications submitted, Mercene follows a patent strategy that reflects both conviction and grand future plans. The company, rooted in the Royal Institute of Technology, realized early on that the way forward was to secure strong patent rights to reach investors and ensure profitable development.

– Our unique know-how and continuous development combined with patents are convincing. We are constantly working to find the unique, further develop and improve, to reach attractive and profitable products, says Tommy Haraldsson, the company’s Chief Technology Officer, who, together with Fredrik Carlborg, believes that the right patent attorney is an important part of this work.

– Fredrik Carlsson has been with us for a long time, and we found each other thanks to KTH Innovation and support from Vinnova. Today, we know how incredibly skilled he is at drafting patent applications and also his expertise in defending patents in oral proceedings, says Tommy and adds:

– The patent we recently had to defend was very important as it covers a part of the product for our core market. Without it, our position as a company would have been weaker in the market, and we are very pleased to have reached the end of a long opposition process with much correspondence and additional lab experiments.

– Working closely with a patent firm that has the right competence and the power to act for our cause is crucial. During this process and throughout our journey with our patents, Fredrik contributes by guiding and managing us. He knows exactly what is needed and when and can always brainstorm and discuss what we should test to position ourselves correctly, says Tommy Haraldsson.

Working closely, transparently, and long-term is important when it comes to patents, Tommy believes.

– We have good conversations and a smooth process. Just as we are attentive to our customers’ needs and problems, Fredrik is in the next step. He is very skilled, and as a doctor of surface chemistry, he understands everything we do incredibly quickly. He also has a sense of profitable business and knows that our strength as a company is that we can tailor what we develop for our partners in the industry where our products are applied. The strength of our patents is also something our customers and partners see value in.

More About Mercene
Mercene is an innovation company with roots at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm. The company develops and sells new types of surface treatments, focusing on resource efficiency and environmental friendliness, primarily for the furniture and flooring industries.