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Intangible assets and competitiveness in Spain: an approach based on trademark registration data in Catalonia (1850-1946)

Patricio Sáiz () and Paloma Fernández ()
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Patricio Sáiz: Departamento de Análisis Económico (Teoría e Historia Económica). Universidad Autónoma de Madrid
Paloma Fernández: Universidad de Barcelona

No 2009/01, Working Papers in Economic History from Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Spain), Department of Economic Analysis (Economic Theory and Economic History)

Abstract: This paper studies the origins of trademark registration in Spain and offers, for the first time, data across sectors and regions with a long-term perspective. In apparent contradiction to the slow path of industrialization and the economic backwardness of Spain between 1850 and the 1940s, empirical evidence on trademark registration suggests that, in this field, Spanish policies and Spanish firms seemed to be well ahead of other countries. Spain was among the pioneering countries in the Western world in having a state legislation protecting brand registration since 1850. Also, some Spanish regions and industrialized sectors adopted similar strategies to those of its European counterparts in terms of using consistently branding and registered trademarks. Our evidence suggests that firms seem to have used brands and marks, first to fight against fraud and imitation and second to add intangible assets to its products in order to endow them with persistent identity trends regarding origins or quality of the product that were difficult to replicate, as often happened with patents. This created and accumulated, over that period of time, a marketing knowledge among consumers, which may have been useful to maintain the competitiveness of some industrial districts and regions.

Keywords: Intangible assets; Trade Marks; Brands; Catalonia, Spain. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: M31 M37 N80 N83 N84 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 54 pages
Date: 2009-05
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-acc, nep-his and nep-mkt
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:uam:wpapeh:200901

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