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Registered Trademark

    Registered trademark symbol

    Three months isn’t very long for the examination and filing of a trademark. Unless it’s potentially contested, then it’s three very long and nervous months.

    Registered trademark symbol

    My first registered trademark was for the Bake & Bag logo, totally new, no issues there. My next was for Home Flow, the proposed model name of the first machine. Another company was using Home Flow for their business, but they made household appliances like robot vacuums and home automation. They also appeared to have gone out of business but still existed on paper, so technically, our names were in the same top level category of trademark, and therefore potentially contestable.

    The good news… they didn’t contest it and Home Flow is the name for the new bagging machine!

    So where’s the machine? That leads me to the next bit of news:

    New Funding

    Following the completion of the Innovate UK fund in 2023, the mechanics of the machine design were finished and just needed built, powered and tested. Unfortunately, the first quotes for the parts were spectacular, thousands of pounds for only a few of the parts.

    This led to a partial redesign, which wasn’t outside the planned timeline (I built in 3 extra months in case of solar flares, ship grounding, alien invasion etc. – the second one actually happened in 2021).

    Fast forward to today (the last three months have felt like slow motion but it’s boring to read about), and I used the over specification of the design from last year to build the future model of the machine, today.

    If you’re familiar with product design, there’s always a risk of design creep. Another new idea, another improvement and ultimately the product never makes it to market or gets overtaken by a competitor.

    I’m working hard to avoid this, but using the learnings from last year to build a slightly better machine – but not the ultimate machine, that comes later. For now I’ve just secured new funding from Invest Northern Ireland (Invest NI), the Economic Development Agency for Northern Ireland. This will fund the electronics of the machine. If you’re unfamiliar with government funding, it very rarely pays the inventor and this is no exception. The money is for me to pay other people to do the work.

    Meanwhile, I’m still waiting on some steel parts for the mechanics of the machine and flogging biscuits everywhere I can to fund the production of the new, simpler parts that were too expensive last year.

    I launched a new biscuit website and relaunched my Etsy shop with a biscuit-greeting card combo, so definitely check that out for your next gift purchase.

    As always, keep in touch on socials and check out my YouTube channel for regular updates – over 550 subscribers now?!

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