Number of the Month: 65,958 inventions

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most inventions relate to automotive and mechanical engineering.

Germans have always been inventive – just consider such innovations as book printing, beer, the lightbulb, the telephone and the MP3 player. Their talent for innovation grows from year to year, culminating in 2014 in a total of 65,958 patent applications being filed with the German Patent and Trade Mark Office (DPMA). That is a new record: the number of patent applications was thus up by 4.4 percent year-on-year. “German companies know just how important it is to innovate, so they invest heavily in research and development”, says DPMA President Cornelia Rudloff-Schäffer.

Attractive location for business

The number of patent applications from abroad has also risen, namely by 12.6 percent from 15,816 to 17,814. “The sharp increase in applications from abroad is proof that Germany remains an extremely attractive location for business”, comments Cornelia Rudloff-Schäffer.

Which is the most innovative sector?

The automotive and mechanical engineering sectors are particularly innovative, the list of the 50 most active companies and institutions once again being headed by the following:

Where is the talent for innovation most pronounced?

Bavaria was able to defend its top spot in the ranking of Germany’s federal states:

  • in 2014, most applications were filed by companies and individuals based in Bavaria (15,533 applications)
  • Baden-Württemberg ranked second (14,533 applications)
  • North Rhine-Westphalia secured third place for itself (7,116 applications)
  • Lower Saxony came in fourth with 3,137 applications
  • Hesse was in fifth place (2,042 applications)

German Patent and Trade Mark Office

In Germany, it is the German Patent and Trade Mark Office (DPMA) that decides whether to grant patents. With a staff of around 2,500, the DPMA is the largest national patent and trade mark office in Europe, as well as the fifth-largest national patent office worldwide. At its offices in Munich, Jena and Berlin, the DPMA issues patents and registers trade marks, utility models and designs.