Goodwin‘s Cambridge office has ‘unique experience in life sciences and excellent knowledge of and extensive experience in IP contracting enables the team to provide relevant advice in relation to complex IP arrangements‘. The firm is frequently involved in helping companies to develop emerging life sciences and technologies, including Covid-19 vaccines, and it counts Oxford Biomedica, Teva and Avacta among its high-profile clients. Malcolm Bates (who has ‘a commercial and pragmatic approach to contract negotiations‘) and Tim Worden (who ‘cuts through the underbrush and pushes transactions forward‘) work from both Cambridge and London and lead the technology and life sciences practice. Counsel Talitha Shkopiak and associates Georgia Powell and Samantha Deacon also play pivotal roles in the practice. Worden and Powell assisted University of Dundee spinout In4Derm to licence a new treatment for immunology and oncology conditions.
Intellectual property in East Anglia
Malcolm Bates; Tim Worden
Other key lawyers:
Georgia Powell; Samantha Deacon; Talitha Shkopiak
‘The firm has knowledge of IP practices and IP licensing in biotech, understanding of what is important to biotech companies.’
‘Partners and associates have broad experience on global license agreements and have suggested useful solutions during the negotiation and contract drafting phase.’
‘Malcolm Bates and Tim Worden are excellent, pro-active, business-minded professionals who cut through the underbrush and push transactions forward.’
‘Unique experience in life sciences. Excellent knowledge and extensive experience of IP contracting enables the team to provide relevant advice in relation to complex IP arrangements.’
‘Malcolm Bates is hugely experienced and understands our business and requirements really well. He has a commercial and pragmatic approach to contract negotiations.’
‘Talitha Shkopiak is very tenacious and able to redraft the incomprehensible so that it makes sense!’
‘Georgia Powell has provided reliable, solid advice on a number of agreements.’
- Advised Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. on a strategic collaboration on the exclusive worldwide licensing and development of MODAG’s lead compound anle138b and a related compound, sery433.
- Advised Calliditas Therapeutics AB on a strategic licence agreement with STADA Arzneimittel AG to register and commercialize a novel specialty drug candidate for the treatment of the chronic autoimmune kidney disease Immunoglobulin A Nephropathy (IgAN) in the European Economic Area member states, Switzerland and the UK.
- Advising Kymab on its agreement under which Sanofi will acquire Kymab for an upfront payment of approximately $1.1 billion and up to $350 million upon achievement of certain milestones.
One client remarks that Mills & Reeve LLP has 'a great and diverse team that works with our lawyers so smoothly', and another 'appreciates the way that they keep us informed of all progress and the way forward in full guidance'. The firm focuses on the technology, life sciences, automotive, food and agriculture, and education sectors, and it counts GlaxoSmithKline, The British Council and the University of Cambridge among its high-profile clients. Practice head Mark Pearce works from both the Leeds and Cambridge offices, co-ordinating a five-partner commercial, IP and IT group. In Cambridge, head of life sciences James Fry and consultant Alasdair Poore, who specialises in IP protection, exploitation and enforcement, are the key practitioners. Principal associates Richard Plaistowe and Nicola Hanglin are highly recommended by clients.
Other key lawyers:
James Fry; Alastair Poore; Richard Plaistowe; Nicola Hanglin
‘The team works effectively as one, so that even when dealing with different team members the level of service/attention to detail is consistent and ‘nothing sticks out’ as amiss or of a lower level. The team proactively collaborates with each other and you to find the best personnel for the particular matter i.e. there is no ego or ‘ownership’ of clients/instructions. This essentially results in the best person(s) for the job, which is great for results.’
‘Richard Plaistowe is a pleasure to deal with. His work, clients and practice clearly matter to him, and nothing is too much trouble or effort. His communication is excellent – clear, concise and timely. His advice is commercially pragmatic. He won’t sugarcoat for the sake of appearances if a client’s position is poor. Nevertheless, even when in a weaker position, he looks for a good outcome. He is also very willing to share information and international contacts, which I personally am very grateful for.’
‘Mills & Reeve has excellent clients, extremely professional service and invoicing that makes sense. We love working with them. It’s a great and diverse team that works with our lawyers so smoothly!’
‘Nicola Hanglin works with many top educational organizations in the UK, and her sense of casework is suitably brilliant.’
‘Richard Plaistowe is an absolute genius – we love working with him.’
‘Richard Plaistowe is very client-oriented.’
The British Council, the University of Cambridge and IELTS Australia Pty Limited (the “IELTS Partners”) and IELTS UK Services Limited
Domino Printing Sciences Plc
Casella Family Brands (Europe) Limited/ Casella Wines Pty Ltd
The Binding Site
Diurnal Group plc
AVEVA Group PLC
First Light Lamps Limited
Orderly Mind Limited
- Managing the international “IELTS” trade mark portfolio of The British Council, the University of Cambridge and IELTS Australia Pty Limited acting for them in trade mark oppositions against applications for IELTS MEDICAL and domain name complaints against domain names in the name of IELTS Medical Ltd.
- Advising F-star Therapeutics on its exclusive licence agreement with AstraZeneca, under which AstraZeneca will receive global rights to the development of next generation Stimulator of Interferon Genes (STING) inhibitor compounds for the treatment of cancers.
- Acting for First Light Lamps Limited in defending a High Court patent infringement claim by Heraeus Noblelight Limited and in its invalidity/revocation counterclaim.
Specialist brand management firm Stobbs IP provides 'a real lesson in how to run a boutique firm, they have a London-style practice, run out of a Cambridge based IP boutique'. One client remarks that the firm is 'first-rate in process, client service, depth of knowledge, global connection, pricing, innovation - they are brilliant on all fronts'. One the leading firms in Europe by volume of trade mark filing, it is also know for work on investigations, litigation, IT systems, domains, commercial contracts, brand extension, designs and copyright, valuation, anti-counterfeiting and on-line brand enforcement. Among its high-profile clients are 7-Eleven, Cambridge University, DKNY and Harley-Davidson. Principal Julius Stobbs, 'tenacious and punchy' head of the solicitor team Chris Sleep and head of litigation Geoff Steward are the key lawyers. Stobbs and Sleep advise ABinBev, the world's largest brewer, on the management of all its UK brands.
Julius Stobbs; Chris Sleep; Geoff Steward
Other key lawyers:
Rebecca Newman; Amelia Sainsbury; Vita Hink
‘Great team, friendly, bright and keen young associates and led by veteran IP litigators Chris Sleep and the excellent Geoff Steward. A real lesson in how to run a boutique firm. They have a London style practice, run out of a Cambridge based IP boutique. This represents excellent value.’
‘Geoff Steward: superb judgment, team building and leadership. Simply put, his work wins his client’s cases.’
‘Chris Sleep is a strong litigator, tenacious and punchy.’
‘Rebecca Newman: Rising star. Good commercial knowledge and excellent judgment. Amelia Sainsbury: Great client handling skills. Vita Hink: Supremely
‘Proactive, innovative, good client management within team.’
‘Chris Sleep – trusted adviser, good strategically, understands the business.’
‘Excellent communication and have a real feel for our brand. They understand some of the non-legal complexities too and shape our IP strategy accordingly.’
‘Stobbs is first-rate. Process, client service, depth of knowledge, global connection, pricing, innovation – they are brilliant on all fronts.’
AB InBev (Becks, Budweiser, Corona, Hoegaarden, Leffe, Stella Artois, etc.)
AG Barr (Irn Bru etc)
Automobile Club de l’Ouest
Automobil Lamborghini SPA
Beiersdorf AG (Nivea)
Cancer Research UK
Combe International (Vagisil)
Corelle Brands LLC
Energizer Holdings Inc
England & Wales Cricket Board
Faber & Faber
Ford Motor Co.
Garrard & Company
Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH)
Iglo Foods (Birdseye, Findus, etc)
Liverpool Football Club
Marks & Spencer
Off White (Virgil Abloh)
Philip Warren & Son
Pip & Nut
Raspberry Pi Foundation
Ritz Hotel (London)
Sanrio (Mr Men)
Slater & Gordon
Stanley Black & Decker Inc
Tommy Hilfiger Europe BV
Tottenham Hotspur FC
Treasury Wines Estates
Verizon Media (including Yahoo & Oath)
- Acting for M&S in relation to their IP and brand strategies, including in relation to the protection of COLIN THE CATERPILLAR and their glitter gin globe designs against copies by other retailers.
- Advising Facebook on their rebrand to Meta, including carrying out extensive searches and devising and implementing strategies in advance of the adoption of the new brand.
- Acting for the Combe International Limited – the manufacturer of VAGISIL feminine hygiene products in a successful High Court claim for trade mark infringement against Dr August Wolff GmbH & Co, the manufacturers of the competing product, VAGISAN.
At Taylor Vinters in Cambridge, 'the IP team is very reactive and efficient’. The IP practice is part of the five-partner commercial technology group, which works closely with the London and Oxford offices to handle all aspects of IP work from the clearance and registration to commercialisation and enforcement. Lead partner Patrick Farrant is vastly experienced in negotiating strategically important and complex biotechnology and IP deals. Prominent IP litigator Gareth Dickson 'gives clear cut advice and delivers efficient actions'. Trade marks and brands expert Louisa Dixon leads the firm’s brand protection practice and advises on the commercialisation, exploitation and enforcement of IP. Senior associate Jo Eales specialises in trade mark clearance and prosecution. The firm counts The Estate of Professor Stephen Hawking and Fox News Network among its high-profile clients.
Other key lawyers:
Gareth Dickson; Louisa Dixon; Laura Rose
‘Taylor Vinters’ IP team is very reactive and efficient.’
‘Gareth Dickson and Laura Rose are straightforward, give clear cut advice and deliver efficient actions. It’s a real pleasure working with them.’
The Estate of Professor Stephen Hawking
Fox News Network, LLC (agency)
Meridian Audio Limited
Maisons du Monde (agency)
- Acted for Fox News Network on various UK trade mark matters.
- Acted for Featurespace on a complex, multi-jurisdictional patent filing program.
- Acted for Meaco on an international design registration project.
The Cambridge office Taylor Wessing LLP is known for ‘partner responsiveness, competitive costs and the quality of the team‘. The local team acts as an integrated part of the firm’s global IP practice, and it handles all aspects of IP work for spin-outs, early-stage and multinational companies. This work includes major partnering transactions, R&D collaborations, commercial transactions and IP disputes. The firm counts Apollo Therapeutics, Fusion Antibodies and The Faraday Institution among its key clients. Practice head Adrian Toutoungi is ‘a go-to partner specialist for IP‘ and frequently advises on IP strategy and transactional IP issues. He assisted Nuclear with the IP aspects of its acquisition of E Ink’s digital microfluidics unit. Tasmina Goraya is a key part of the patents team and acts for local, national and international clients in the life sciences sector, including pharmaceutical and medical device companies.
Other key lawyers:
‘Partner responsiveness, competitive costs and quality of team lead us to engage the firm regularly.’
‘Adrian Toutoungi is our go-to partner specialist for IP.’
Cambridge Innovation Capital
Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult
My Personal Therapeutics
Start Codon cohort companies
The Faraday Institution
Birketts LLP has ‘an extremely good team, very technically skilled and great to work with‘. The firm is best known for advising local East Anglian clients on all aspects of the life cycle of IP and it has a diverse client base that includes small start-ups and large regional enterprises. Among them are Greene King Limited and Galileo Foundation. Legal director and chartered trade mark attorney Melanie Harvey in Ipswich leads on trade marks and branding, legal director Maria Peyman in Cambridge. Also in Cambridge is experienced partner Quentin Golder, who is oversees the firm’s non-contentious IP work. Golder assisted neuroscience company Cambridge Cognition Ltd with licensing technology to pharmaceutical companies.
Melanie Harvey; Maria Peyman; Quentin Golder
‘Extremely good team, very technically skilled. great to work with.’
‘Maria Peyman – technically excellent.’
Cambridge Cognition Ltd
Ardex UK Ltd
Greene King Limited
Hayman Group Limited/Burlington Drink Co.
Alyce Designs Inc
'The legal and commercial advice was so reassuring and the understanding of the problems l encountered was dealt with a great deal of empathy', says a client of Marks & Clerk. The Cambridge office is an outpost of one of the UK's largest IP firms and taps into a large network of solicitors, patent attorneys and trade mark attorneys across eight offices. In Cambridge, the key focus is commercial IP, for which the counts Alzheimer Scotland and Downing College among its clients. Simon Portman leads the Cambridge office and is co-head of commercial IP transactions along with Michael Moore, who works from both Cambridge and London.
Simon Portman; Michael Moore
‘I have used the practice for many years now. The service at a commercial and personal level has remained excellent. They keep abreast of all changes and development in the marketplace, which gives me full confidence in my decision-making.’
‘I have recently had a very unusual transaction and the advice and help l received was excellent, despite me giving them a number of legal challenges. I cannot speak highly enough of the individuals l deal with.’
‘The advice and help l received from Simon Portman was exceptional. The legal and commercial advice was so reassuring and the understanding of the problems l encountered was dealt with a great deal of empathy.’
DAAL Noise Control
Downing College, Cambridge
- Advising a former England hockey player who is setting up an online, interactive hockey game, Hockey 21, in relation to IP strategy, contracts with game developers, sponsorship agreements, and licensing.
- Advised Alzheimer Scotland in relation to intellectual property matters arising out of its participation in the Brain Health Scotland consortium.
- Advising XR Nation in relation to its business ecosystem for Nordic augmented reality and virtual reality companies.
Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP has a broad-ranging practice that handles patents, designs, trade marks, copyright and rights in confidential information, and is adept in both contentious and non-contentious matters. The firm has extensive experience in transactional IP, licensing, collaboration agreements and R&D agreements. Rachel Bradley works with partners in London and Oxford to co-lead the IP practice and clients remark that she has 'significant expertise and supports clients in robust and legally sound commercial agreements'. She advises clients in the life sciences, publishing and charities sectors, and acted for Fluid Pharma on collaboration agreements for the development of novel paediatric medicines for malaria.
‘We have worked with Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP for many years now, and have never been disappointed with the service we receive.’
‘Rachel Bradley has significant expertise in our industry field, and has supported us closely over the last few years as our need for robust and legally sound commercial agreements has grown. Together with Rachel we have developed bespoke agreements for our customers, which not only provide them with the reassurances they require, but as a not for profit ensure that our interests are protected.’
The Company of Biologists Limited
Applied Molecular Transport, Inc.
42 Technology Limited
Fluid Pharma Limited
Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE)
Cambridge Commodities Limited
Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital
Vivifi Biotech Limited
Cambridge Design Partnership
Oxford Cannabinoid Technologies
- As part of the firm’s work advising on Oxford Cannabinoid Technologies’ IPO on the London Stock Exchange, it leads on all IP and Commercial aspects of the IPO. This included reviewing all IP agreements, such as patent licences, and the IP aspects (ownership, licensing obligations) of all other commercial agreements that the company had executed, as part of due diligence.
- Supported Fluid Pharma Limited with reviewing its funding agreement with Unitaid, a global health agency, hosted by World Health Organisation, for a grant to develop novel paediatric medicines for malaria using Fluid Pharma’s MicroCoat™ technology, and drafted collaboration agreements for Fluid to use with some of its partners for the project, which had to be consistent with key provisions of the main funding agreement.
- Acting as lead co-ordinator of the review of all European clinical trial agreements for Applied Molecular Transport, Inc, for trials to occur in sites across numerous countries in Europe.
Fosters in Norwich has a unique monthly subscription service, known as In House, for clients to access legal services and IP is a key strand in this work. Jamie Arnall leads the In House business and commercial practice, in which Charlotte Darkins handles the niche IP offering for sports clients. Darkins is 'always quick to answer any questions and work through any contracts', and her work currently includes advice on cutting-edge cryptocurrency and NFT projects in the sports sector. She also works closely with clients to review and enhance the value of their trade mark portfolios.
Other key lawyers:
‘I’ve found the team at Fosters very easy to work with. There is always someone available and they are very quickly able to point me in the right direction if additional support is needed from elsewhere is needed within the practice. One example of this was when trademarking one of our brands. We were very quickly introduced to the trademark specialist and the process was very quickly submitted.’
‘I have had especially fantastic service from Charlotte Darkins, she is always quick to answer any questions and work through any contracts that I throw at her. Not being trained in the legal sector, I particularly appreciate the fact that Charlotte gives context to any adjustments we may need to make in any legal documentation. This allows me to better understand how to approach and tackle the more complex issues.’
Real Project Management Limited
Nottingham Forest Football Club Limited
- Providing ongoing advice and support in relation to Nottingham Forest Football Club Limited’s intellectual property portfolio, including means of protection outside of the UK.
- Providing ongoing advice and support to Real Project Management Limited in relation to its intellectual property portfolio, copyright positions and brand protection strategies with regards to consultants, copyrighters and clients.
- Providing ongoing advice and support in relation to Zatu Limited’s intellectual property portfolio, including the securing of trademarks and action against infringements.
Tees Law in Cambridge recently recruited senior associate Alastair Cotton, formerly of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), to lead on brand protection matters for clients in the sport, media, education, and cultural sectors. Cotton also focuses on issues concerning ambush marketing and the staging of sports events. Since joining, he has advised the IPC on a wide range of matters including with the protection, exploitation and enforcement of its intellectual property rights. This encompassed enforcing the IP rights globally against infringers, and preparing and executing the brand protection strategy for the Paralympic Games.
International Paralympic Committee
- Providing a wide range of legal advice to the International Paralympic Committee, including with respect to the protection, exploitation and enforcement of its intellectual property rights.
- Advised the International Disability Rights Campaign on a number of commercial, marketing and branding issues.
- Advised a Swedish technology company specialising in lead generating and performance-based online marketing on its potential entry into the UK market and various IP issues arising from a proposed acquisition.