HUUB

4 min read

HUUB

Derby | Started trading in 2011

HUUB are leaders in innovative wetsuit design for triathletes and open water swimmers.

About the company

Website: www.huubdesign.com

Twitter: @HUUBDesign

Instagram: huubdesign

Interesting facts: HUUB has some famous faces among its brand ambassadors, including Gareth Thomas, the Brownlee brothers, Tom Bishop, Jess Learmonth, George Peasgood, Georgia Taylor-Brown and Joe Townsend. Huub has also helped break a few world records - Ross Edgeley broke no less than four world records while wearing a HUUB wetsuit, including becoming the first person to swim around Great Britain without setting foot on land.

Lightbulb moment

  • Dean had worked in running shoe technology, where there are lots of different styles for different body and foot types.
  • While running shoe technology had been explored significantly, he wondered why the same hadn’t been done for wetsuit technology.
  • This evolved into looking at the way the body is held by the wetsuit and the moving pieces of the swim stroke and how they can be assisted.

Why a patent?

  • It was initially to protect the design.
  • Having discovered the Patent Box, which enables companies to apply for a lower rate of corporation tax to profits made from patented inventions, Huub decided it was worth the investment.
  • They say a patent professionalises and protects the business. It enables them to tell factories that the technology is patented, so they aren’t tempted to copy it. You can do this as soon as you have a patent pending, meaning the technology has already generated some protection – in Dean Jackson’s words: it ‘puts a firewall around your invention’.
  • Huub is confident it will be a good marketing tool once the patent has been approved as it shows potential customers that the technology was worth protecting and they are buying a good product.
  • It also makes our distributors feel secure they have a protected piece of technology to invest money into for marketing and sales.

Timescale

  • Dean started the process about three years ago and estimates that the whole application took about 2.5 years.

Issues securing a patent?

  • The business was put-off by the length of time (around 2.5 years) and cost (£15,000) of securing a patent – these elements meant that the company almost didn’t file a patent at all, but decided the positives outweigh the negatives.

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