The European Patent Office (EPO) has announced a record number of patent filings in 2012. In total the EPO received 257.744 patent filings, 5.2% more than 2011.

7.1% of all European patent filings come from the UK, with Rolls Royce, Unileaver and BAE Systems filing the most. Across all countries Samsung has filed the most applications.

The UK are ranked No.4 in patent filings among European countries. Important areas of 2012 UK patenting activities included Engines, pumps and turbines and the field of Measurement. In both areas, the UK contributed 5% to patent applications at the EPO.

The UK was also an important originator of patent applications in Pharmaceuticals and Organic fine chemistry, with shares of 4% in each field. Top UK applicants in these fields were Glaxo and Unilever, respectively.

European companies were leading applicants in eight of the ten most active technology fields. They were particularly dominant in transport (especially the automotive and aeronautic sectors), where over 60% of all applications came from EPO states.

The EPO is made up of 38 member states and the 2012 record beats the last one set which was back in 2008.

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