Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

Japan > Intellectual property > Intellectual property – International firms and joint ventures > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings


Index of tables

  1. Intellectual property – International firms and joint ventures
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next Generation Partners

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

A deep knowledge of the area’ makes Baker McKenzie (Gaikokuho Joint Enterprise) a go-to firm for intellectual property work. Practice head and trade mark, copyright and designs specialist Kensaku Takase leads a team of 13 specialist attorneys with local and international expertise. The group handles the full range of IP matters including portfolio management, IP-related transactions, IP disputes, anti-counterfeiting issues, trade secret protection, copyrights and designs. Daisuke Tatsuno is also a name to note and focuses on the registration, protection and licensing of IP rights.

With a particular focus on trade marks, patents and copyright, Hogan Lovells Horitsu Jimusho Gaikokuho Kyodo Jigyo ‘knows the industry' and has a client list that includes some of the world’s top brands. It also has one of the largest teams in Japan with three dedicated partners and over 50 associates and non-associate practitioners. The group benefits from the firm's extensive international presence and cross-border capability, as evidenced by its work with high-profile multinational companies, including advising Nissan on its global trade mark portfolio and strategy. Lloyd Parker heads up an experienced team, which includes multijurisdictional IP enforcement and portfolio management specialist, senior associate Tomoe Takahashi, as well as the ‘extremely hardworking, friendly and brilliant’ Dr Frederick Ch’en, a specialist in IP and life sciences. Other highlights included advising long-standing client Brother Group on its global trade mark portfolio and anti-counterfeiting work.

With an ‘overall level of service that is excellent’, Morrison & Foerster LLP has developed a comprehensive team with over 30 IP lawyers in the Tokyo office. Its work covers the full spectrum of IP issues including patents, trade marks, copyrights, trade secrets, unfair competition issues, and related IP matters. Robert Hollingshead, Stuart Beraha and Louise Stoupe jointly lead the practice, which draws from a deep well of expertise and includes the experienced Max Olson and Chie Yakura; Yakura represents non-Japanese and Japanese corporations in a range of contentious matters with an emphasis on IP, technology-related matters, antitrust issues and product liability work, regularly appearing before the Japanese courts. In a recent highlight, the team successfully represented Toshiba and Toshiba Memory Corporation (TMC) in several disputes and arbitrations brought by Western Digital and its subsidiary SanDisk relating to the sale of TMC to a consortium of investors led by Bain Capital. Also noteworthy are newly promoted partners Akira Irie and Yuka Teraguchi.

Jones Day's clients benefit from the firm's global IP practice, which is experienced in litigation, prosecution, licensing transfers, and IP counselling. Practice head Michiru Takahashi recently assisted Merz Pharma with a licence and co-development agreement with Teijin, and leads a strong team, which includes US-qualified partners Maxwell Fox and Shogo Asaji, who focus on IP litigation, post-grant proceedings, adversarial licensing, patent analysis and IP counselling in the US and Japan. Noted for its domestic and international IP capabilities, the group represents clients including Mitsubishi Cable Industries, Dell and Canon in complex IP disputes and counselling matters.

With expertise in cross-border litigation, licence negotiations and strategic IP work, Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP attracts a high-profile list of domestic and international clients including Toshiba and Mitsubishi UFJ Research and Consulting. The practice also handles a large amount of non-contentious work spanning IP licensing and patent portfolio management, and has been notably involved in emerging markets including Internet of Things and artificial intelligence (AI); Shinsuke Yakura is the Asia head for the firm’s global AI group. The department is also experienced in cross-border IP, Yoshihiro Takatori is a key name for counterfeiting work, and managing associate Kei Kato handles contentious matters. David Case leads the department and recently advised Shindengen Electric Manufacturing on negotiating a licence agreement with WiTricity, a US-based technology company.

Paul Hastings LLP has a diverse client roster, which includes high-profile automotive, technology, chemicals, life sciences and pharmaceutical companies including Fujitsu, Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma, Hitachi Construction Machinery, and Takeda Pharmaceutical. Alongside the benefits of the firm’s global network, its Japanese IP team has a strong relationship with the investigations, compliance and white-collar departments. Practice head Hiroyuki Hagiwara focuses on complex cross-border matters including patent infringement actions and IP licensing disputes, and is defending Gree against claims brought by Supercell alleging the misuse of patents related to the login technology and update procedures of Gree's mobile games.

Litigation-focused Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP  excels in cross-border IP, handling matters in the US, EU and other jurisdictions for a client roster including Sony, Toshiba, Nissan, Canon and Samsung. The group has a notable focus on patent infringement actions, principally in  the US and Germany; team leader Ryan Goldstein recently obtained a significant victory for Japanese entertainment company Tsuburaya Productions in a jury trial in the United States District Court for the Central District of California regarding the ownership of the rights of Tsuburaya’s Ultraman superhero character in all countries outside of Japan.

Foley & Lardner's Tokyo office benefits from the firm’s global network, which allows it to assist and represent clients around the globe, particularly in the US, in complex business transactions involving IP and technology issues in Japan. Leading the practice is Etsuo Doi who represents both Japanese and international companies in a diverse range of matters including cross-border transactions, IP, e-commerce, joint ventures, licensing and general corporate work.

With experience acting as lead counsel in trade mark and patent infringement proceedings, as well as registering more than 100 marks in Japan for both global and Japanese companies, Squire Gaikokuho Kyodo Jigyo Horitsu Jimusho provides advice on the full spectrum of IP issues. The team has particular expertise in licensing and technology transfers, infringement litigation and increasingly the emerging areas of cybersecurity, information privacy and data protection. The practice, led by Shigeru Miki, provides advice on a broad range of licensing matters, and also recently assisted Kashiwabara with a trade mark registration involving consultation and prosecution elements.

Interview with...

Law firm partners and practice heads explain how their firms are adapting to clients' changing needs

International comparative guides

Giving the in-house community greater insight to the law and regulations in different jurisdictions.

Select Practice Area

Tokyo Anti-Corruption Forum 2018

  • China and Hong Kong GC Powerlist

    In May, The Legal 500 and GC Magazine in partnership with Morrison & Foerster co-hosted the first in a series of Anti-Corruption Forums set to take place across Asia. Held exclusively for senior in-house counsel, the event brought together 25 leading general counsel, heads of legal and heads of compliance from across Japan to discuss current anti-corruption trends and share best practices to mitigate emerging risks.

    Tokyo Anti-Corruption Forum 2018

Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments in Japan

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Taking control of a Japanese publicly listed company:

    Introductory notes for successfully completing an M&A
  • Yuasa and Hara Business Law News

    Contents of the Issue Law on liability for breach of contract Review on the amendment to the cabinet office order on Corporate Disclosure

    The Minister for Justice, Alan Shatter (“the Minister”), has published the Criminal Justice Bill 2011 (“the Bill”). The main purpose of the Bill is stated to be “…to amend the criminal law to improve certain procedural matters and strengthen Garda investigative powers. The intention is that such improvements will assist in reducing the delays associated with the investigation and prosecution of complex crime, in particular white collar crime.”
  • Japan: New legislative framework for Sukuk

    The new framework passed in May 2011 will provide a solid legal platform for issuing Sukuk Ijarah under Japanese law. NAOKI ISHIKAWA highlights key legal structures and tax treatment in respect of the anticipated Sukuk issuances in Japan.
  • Yakult Bottle Acquired Distinctiveness

    Do you know about Yakult's delicious lactic acid drink which is contained in a small bottle? Yakult's lactic acid drink (hereafter referred to as "Yakult drink") is the most famous lactic acid drink in Japan and today is also being sold in many countries around the world. When you are enjoying Yakult drink, please keep in mind the case mentioned below.
  • Tax: Japan: International Joint Ventures

    Tax on international joint ventures. Country Q&A (Japan).
  • Japan: Recent Developments in Practice and Law

    The successful closing of two Islamic fi nance transactions which was announced in July 2010 by Nomura Holdings have paved a concrete path for Japanese corporations to consider overseas Islamic fi nance markets for their fund raising activities. The fi rst transaction was in Asia for the issuance of Sukuk Ijarah and the second was in the Middle East for the establishment of a Commodity Murabahah facility (Nomura Deals).
  • Renewable energy takes off in Japan

    Like many other countries, Japan has decided to reform its renewable energy (RE) policy, to dramatically increase the use of renewable energy. The core policy mechanism is a feed-in tariff (FIT). This chapter summarises the contemplated Japanese FIT and its practical impact on existing and future investment in this sector, providing an overview of:
  • Licensing - 2010

    Q & A on Licensing in Japan 
  • Law on the Civil Jurisdiction of Japanese Courts over Foreign Countries, etc.

    The Law has been enacted to clarify the scope of application of the civil jurisdiction of Japanese courts over foreign countries, etc., and set exceptions to civil preocedings involving foreign countries, etc., based on the United Nations Convention on the Jurisdictional Immunities of States and their property (UN Convention on Immunities) (see Article 1). 

Press Releases worldwide

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to