The global retail industry experienced a 22% decline in patent filings in Q4 2023 compared with the previous quarter. The total number of grants rose by 2%, resulting in overall patent publications decreasing by 22.9%, according to GlobalData’s Patent Analytics. GlobalData’s databook Retail: Patents Trends Q4 2023 offers comprehensive insights into patenting trends, major players’ strategies, and geographical focus in the sector over the last three years. Buy the databook here.

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Notably, the number of patent applications in the retail industry was 6,232 in Q4 2023, versus 8,079 in the prior quarter. Filings were down 37% year-on-year and decrease 22% quarter-on-quarter. This compares to a 37% year-on-year decrease in patent grants and 22% decline in quarter-on-quarter.

Most patenting activity has been in the Retail sector, where the number of patents filed Q3 2023 was 1796, a drop of 8% versus the previous quarter. The second-largest patent count was in Online Retail (1318, down 45%) and then Furniture in third (529, up 5%).

The top five companies accounted for 13% of patenting activity

Analysis of patenting activity by companies shows that the largest number of patents filed over the last quarter was by Alibaba Group with 236, followed by NIKE with 235 and Capital One Financial with 144.

Patenting activity was driven by the US with a 30% share of total patent filings

The largest share of patent filings in the retail industry in Q4 2023 was in the US with 30%, followed by China (18%) and Japan (8%). The share represented by the US was 6% higher than the 24% share it accounted for in Q3 2023.

For further understanding of GlobalData's Retail: Patents Trends Q4 2023, buy the databook here.

This content was updated on 23 January 2024

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.