In a Q&A with nutraingredients-usa.com, DC Partner Kevin Bell points out the uptick in lawsuits around patents in the past seven to 10 years. According to Mr. Bell, companies in the dietary supplement market have not traditionally invested in intellectual property, and even in instances where they did invest in patents, those patents were rarely enforced. Now, acquiring IP and defending it is part of the sector’s maturation, said Mr. Bell in the March 3, 2014 piece. Companies that owned certain market niches in the past have lately found themselves encountering new players. “It’s another way to address competition in the market for companies that didn’t have a lot of competition in the past,”he added. Mr. Bell ends the Q&A with an argument for patents and the value they add to companies: “I believe when it comes to getting patents and owning them, that is money well spent.” He noted the increase in better corporate governance among dietary supplement companies regarding IP, claiming that as more and more pharmaceutical companies acquire companies in the space, companies recognize the importance of an IP portfolio. “It makes good sense for dietary supplement companies to do everything they can to protect their IP,” said Bell.