Industry focus: Healthcare and life sciences in France
Allen & Overy LLP
Allen & Overy LLP houses a leading multi-disciplinary healthcare practice, representing an impressive range of pharmaceutical corporations, biotech companies and associations. Its patent expertise is highly sought after in pharmaceutical cases relating to preliminary injunctions, with department head Laëtitia Bénard taking the lead on these matters. A growth area for the team has been in the medical cannabis space, where it has been retained by several manufacturers to challenge both French and European regulations. The practice also has in-house transactional capabilities; Jean-Claude Rivalland and Frédéric Moreau are the key contacts.
Other key lawyers:
Jean-Claude Rivalland; Frédéric Moreau
‘Real engagement, availability and a high level of competence.‘
‘Laëtitia Bénard is always available, competent and one of the best lawyers in the field.‘
‘The ability to collaborate with others is very important in this field instead of being insular, and Allen and Overy understands that.‘
‘Laëtitia Bénard is very experienced and knows the pharmaceutical industry well.‘
‘Extremely solid French life sciences practice, including patent and regulatory capabilities. Definitely among the best on the French market.‘
‘Laëtitia Bénard beats any competition when it comes to pharmaceutical patent litigation and is highly regarded in the market.‘
Merck Sharp & Dohme
SEITA (Imperial Tobacco)
The Green Organic Dutchman
- Representing MSD in multiple actions against major generic companies before the Paris Court of First Instance, the Paris Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court concerning validity and enforcement.
- Representing the founder and CEO of Kanavape in the first referral to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) related to CBD (cannabidiol) products.
- Advised Champagne Louis Roederer on the acquisition of Diamond Creek Vineyards in Napa Valley.
With a strong contentious healthcare practice, Altana is particularly well regarded for product liability class actions, a reputation cemented by having acted on the first action of this kind in France. Experienced in litigation before the civil, administrative and criminal courts, the team also routinely appears before healthcare regulators both domestically and in multi-jurisdictional cases. The practice has further expertise in IP, notably patent law. On the transactional side, the group is retained by several corporates and investors on M&A and joint venture mandates, particularly in emerging markets. Armand Aviges, Jean-Nicolas Soret and Gilles Gaillard. Frank Valentin left the firm in 2021.
Bastide le Confort Medical
Biofides – Arc Pharma
CEA (Commissariat à l’Energie atomique et aux énergies alternatives)
Eurapharma (CFAO Group)
GE Health Care
- Advising Celltrion Healthcare, an international pharmaceutical company specialised in the manufacture and marketing of biosimilar medicines, on a regulatory matter.
- Advising Healthcare Digital Solution Intelligence & Application on seed fundraising in relation to the development of its business in obstetric gynaecology, including the MyEndoApp mobile application.
- Acting as counsel to Laboratoire Synbionyme in the management of its trade mark portfolio throughout the world.
Providing an 'integrated and complete service', Dechert LLP advises laboratories, life sciences companies and private equity investors, who rely on the practice's transactional expertise. On the regulatory side, the department is equally balanced between its private and public law offering; up-and-coming partner Sophie Pelé is the key contact. The practice is also noted for its antitrust capabilities, with co-head Mélanie Thill-Tayara leading on these cases. Her counterpart Alain Decombe is highly regarded for corporate work, advising on reorganisations, asset deals and international commercial transactions within the sector. Other key names in the group include Anne-Charlotte Rivière, Jacques Sivignon for contentious work and Marie Fillon for IP matters.
Other key lawyers:
Sophie Pelé; Jacques Sivignon; Marie Fillon; Anne-Charlotte Rivière
‘Very professional and very responsive.‘
‘Mélanie Thill-Tayara and her team have a remarkable understanding of competition law and are always pragmatic in their approach.‘
‘The department can provide an integrated and complete service.‘
Mérieux Equity Partners
Sifi S.p.A. / Gifrer
- Advised ArchiMed in the partial sale of biotech company Polyplus-transfection to Warburg Pincus, as well as on its reinvestment, alongside Warburg Pincus, in the Polyplus group.
- Representing Roche in a case before the French Competition Authority relating to an alleged abuse of collective dominance with Novartis concerning the “off-label” use of Roche’s drug Avastin in the ophthalmic field where Novartis markets blockbuster Lucentis.
- Advised Robocath in connection with its €40m series C round of financing with Chinese investors including MicroPort and Zhejiang Silk Road Fund.
Dentons is particularly sought after for transactional work in the life sciences sector, where its highly regarded M&A group is retained by leading industry players, typically advising blue-chip industrial clients and investment funds on large-cap transformational deals. Corporate partners and practice co-heads Anne-Laure Marcerou and Jean-Marc Grosperrin are the key contacts, and Grosperrin also jointly leads the firm's global life sciences group. On the regulatory side, the team is well versed in working with the French healthcare authorities. Senior counsel Pascale Poupelin is highly regarded for drug market access matters. Focusing on tax, regulatory and market access issues, co-head Julien Le Guyader is another name to note.
Other key lawyers:
‘Well integrated on the M&A side. They understand the complex nature of the work.‘
KYOWA KIRIN PHARMA
TBR DENTAL GROUP
- Advised Lactalis, the French multinational dairy corporation, on its $860m multi-jurisdictional acquisition of the global infant nutrition business of South African pharmaceutical group Aspen Pharmacare.
- Assisted MicroPort, a leading global developer, manufacturer and marketer of medical solutions, on its investment in the French medtech company Robocath and on the establishment of a strategic partnership for the setting-up of a joint venture in China.
- Advised French biotech company Imcheck Therapeutics in relation to its series B offering.
HOYNG ROKH MONÉGIER
IP boutique HOYNG ROKH MONÉGIER is best known for its expertise in cross-border patent litigation, acting for leading French, European and international biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. Practice co-heads Benoît Strowel and Sabine Agé work closely with Denis Monégier du Sorbier and Amandine Métier on high-stakes patent disputes, typically those related to biological therapeutic agents, including antibody technology and gene activation. Co-head Anne Servoir is highly regarded for regulatory work, particularly in competition and distribution law matters, assisting originator companies with all aspects of their market access strategy. A differentiating feature of the team is that most lawyers also possess a technical scientific qualification.
Other key lawyers:
Denis Monégier du Sorbier; Amandine Métier
- Representing Gilead, a US pharmaceutical company leader in the development of anti-HIV products, in proceedings for the revocation of a supplementary protection certificate (SPC) started by various generic companies.
- Acting for AstraZeneca in litigation against various generic companies regarding patents covering Faslodex.
- Acting for Ceva in a patent dispute with Bayer over a patent covering a drug for piglets.
McDermott Will & Emery AARPI stands out for its 'deep technical understanding of the specific requirements in biotech' and its transactional expertise. The team has a strong track record for strategic M&A, often with an international slant, particularly across Europe, the US and Asia. Supported by highly capable regulatory and patent licensing practices, the department can also call on the wider offering at the firm to advise on IP, data privacy, employment, antitrust and tax matters. Team head Emmanuelle Trombe advises pharmaceutical, medical device and biopharmaceutical companies on corporate and commercial mandates, while Anthony Paronneau specialises in M&A, licensing and private equity transactions.
Other key lawyers:
‘Excellent competences and availability.‘
‘Great diversity within the team.‘
‘Emmanuelle Trombe and Anthony Paronneau are excellent professionals, always agreeable and available during a crisis.‘
‘In-depth knowledge of the biotech sector and clients’ business needs. Extremely reactive and approachable. Generally great people to work with.‘
‘Deep technical understanding of the specific requirements in biotech.‘
‘We appreciate the close proximity to partners, and their reactivity and pragmatism.‘
Advent France Biotechnology
Médecins sans frontières (Doctors without Borders)
- Advised privately held company Themis on an agreement for the sale of all its outstanding share capital and voting rights, with the objective of developing vaccine candidates using the measles vector platform.
- Acted for Servier on the acquisition of Symphogen.
- Advised Vetoquinol on the acquisition of the European and UK rights to the Profender and Drontal product families from Elanco Animal Health.
Simmons & Simmons
Simmons & Simmons is a go-to firm for pharmaceutical product liability cases, with the practice, and in particular Jacques-Antoine Robert, continuing to advise Servier in relation to the Mediator trial, one of the largest-scale product liability cases in French legal history. Such cases constitute about half of the department's work, with a combination of commercial litigation, competition, regulatory, data protection, IP and corporate matters making up the rest. International practice group head Alexandre Regniault has a broad practice encompassing both contentious and regulatory work, with extensive experience advising on clinical trial agreements. Ombline Ancelin is the key contact for antitrust and distribution issues.
Other key lawyers:
Jacques-Antoine Robert; Ombline Ancelin
‘Personalised advice, thanks to a thorough understanding of the market and the practicalities of regulations.‘
‘Alexandre Regniault constantly shows exceptional engagement to clients and provides extremely timely feedback on the most complex topics.‘
‘This proactive and adaptable team makes an excellent partner for our business.‘
‘Alexandre Regniault is always present, accessible and collaborative.‘
- Advised Alpha HealthGroup on the acquisition from GSK of the Bialcol and Cibalgina range.
- Acting for Merck in a dispute before the civil and criminal courts relating to side effects of the drug Levothyrox.
- Advising Servier in relation to one of the largest-scale product liability cases in French legal history, relating to the safety of the weight loss drug Mediator.
Distinguished by its 'multi-disciplinary expertise in both contentious and regulatory matters', Viguié Schmidt & Associés is retained by leading medical device manufacturers and pharmaceutical companies. Practice co-head Etienne Gouesse is particularly experienced in representing the latter, advising on pricing, marketing and product liability matters, as well as leading litigation before the administrative, civil and commercial courts. His counterpart Iñaki Saint-Esteben specialises in antitrust law, with a strong track record in cartel, abuse of dominance and merger control cases. On the transactional side, the team is experienced in advising on high-profile M&A in the life sciences sector.
‘The healthcare and life sciences team at Viguié is distinguished by its multi-disciplinary expertise in both contentious and regulatory matters.‘
‘Etienne Gouesse has a pragmatic vision and great foresight.‘
‘Always makes serious and pertinent arguments.‘
JOHNSON & JOHNSON
- Advised InnovaHealth Partners on its acquisition of a controlling interest in Koelis, an innovator in the market for image-guided systems for prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment.
- Advised the shareholders of Laborizon on the sale of a majority stake to Biogroup and their reinvestment in Biogroup.
Representing leading pharmaceutical companies and clients specialised in medical devices, August Debouzy is highly regarded for its expertise in pharmaceutical patent litigation before the domestic and European courts. Joint practice head François Pochart, who is described as 'very knowledgeable, confident and experienced', leads on these matters alongside co-head Grégoire Desrousseaux. A further area of expertise for the team is assisting insurers of medical device manufacturers which are the subject of product liability proceedings. Co-head Alexandra Cohen-Jonathan is the key contact for these cases.
‘Reactive and commercially aware team.‘
‘Very reactive and collaborative team.‘
‘Very clear in their explanations, good availability and follow up of cases.’
‘The team’s skills in pharmaceutical patent litigation and side laws (such as regulatory and public law) are very strong, and they master both national and European Patent Office (EPO) case law and have an excellent understanding of international issues.‘
‘The team successfully mixes attorneys-at-law and patent attorneys, often in the same individual, which makes them very efficient in quickly understanding both the legal and technical issues.‘
‘François Pochart knows his jurisdiction and French case law very thoroughly, which allows him to give reliable opinions. He also has a very good knowledge of foreign systems, which is important in pan-European or global issues in the industry.‘
‘Specialist sector and patent litigation expertise.‘
‘François Pochart is very knowledgeable, confident and experienced.‘
LFB (laboratoire français du fractionnement)
Agence nationale santé publique
AP-HP (assistance publique hôpitaux de Paris)
Medtronic lung health
- Representing Teva in patent and SPC nullity proceedings.
- Acting for three groups of 500 Swedish victims of defective breast implants in claims for compensation against TÜV Rheinland, the certifying body of the implants.
- Assisting Teva in complex infringement and nullity proceedings with parallel litigation in the Netherlands and before the EPO.
With an 'excellent mastery of the regulatory issues', Baker McKenzie's internationally focused life sciences group is retained by multinational pharmaceutical companies and medical device manufacturers. The department advises on a range of sensitive regulatory matters, spanning compliance, investigations, licensing and promotional claims strategies, while on the transactional side it is well versed in product acquisition arrangements and corporate reorganisations. Working closely with the firm's litigation group, the team also acts for healthcare clients in product liability claims. Practice head Julie Yeni has expertise in both advisory and litigious matters covering the full life cycle of products.
‘Flexible and agile in working as a team with capabilities that complement each other, particularly in terms of experience and detailed technical knowledge.‘
‘The main asset is the quality of the lawyers, both in terms of collaboration skills and quality of advice. They stand out for their risk management approach and co-construction of solutions with the client.‘
‘The team had an excellent mastery of the regulatory issues and was capable of resolving complex questions. In terms of strengths, the team was proactive, efficient and reflected a sense of cohesion.‘
‘I was very impressed by Julie Yeni. She is proactive, responsive, very sharp and very much business oriented. She delivers the work on time and within budget.‘
‘Very good understanding of the pharmaceutical market, with experts across the globe.‘
‘Constructive and flexible when it comes to billing.‘
‘Julie Yeni always makes herself available and you are assured of good coordination between all the team members.‘
‘Reactive and precise.‘
BMS – Bristol-Myers Squibb
- Advised Bristol-Myers Squibb on the $1.6bn sale of its consumer health business, UPSA, to Taisho Pharmaceutical, one of Japan’s largest pharmaceutical companies.
- Advised major investors (Accel Partners, Eurazeo, Bpifrance Participations and Kernel Investissements) on their investment in Doctolib.
Best known for its expertise in patent law, Bird & Bird has also carved out a niche in advising clients in the life sciences sector on their digital transformation and the regulatory frameworks surrounding the use of digital technologies. Ariane Mole and Merav Griguer are both highly regarded in this field. More conventionally, the practice brings together specialists in corporate, regulatory and data protection work to provide a full-service offering to large biotech and healthcare companies. IP expert Yves Bizollon is a go-to name for patent litigation, while department head Emmanuelle Porte is the key contact for corporate work.
Other key lawyers:
Yves Bizollon; Ariane Mole; Merav Griguer
Actavis Group PTC EHF
Asklepios Biopharmaceuticals, Inc.
SATT d’aquitaine (société de valorisation recherche publique)
- Advised Enterome on the development of innovative therapeutic approaches to support a personalised medicine for microbiome-related diseases.
- Advising Amgen, the first player to have launched a biosimilar of the Humira product in Europe.
- Advising Biosency, which has developed a medical device for patients suffering from chronic respiratory failure, on data protection and health regulatory matters.
With a client list featuring some of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies, Clifford Chance continues to be involved in high-profile litigation in the life sciences sector; notably, Thomas Baudesson and 'sharp and convincing' counsel Gaëlle Merlier are representing Pfizer in a major class action suit relating to its former vaccine Meningitec. On the regulatory side, the department advises on the entire product life cycle and has developed niche expertise in the cannabis/hemp products industry. Other key names in the practice include compliance expert Olivier Gaillard and antitrust specialist David Tayar. Counsel Loïc Lemercier joined from August Debouzy in October 2019, bringing experience in a range of cross-border IP matters.
Other key lawyers:
‘Gaëlle Merlier is a very talented lawyer. She is very professional and passionate about her clients. She is committed to defending their best interests. She knows what she wants to achieve and she is a very sharp and convincing litigator.‘
Mérieux Equity Partners
BTG International Germany GmbH
Theratechnologies Europe Limited
Optimed Medizinische Instrumente GmbH
- Representing Pfizer in a major quasi-class action in relation to its former vaccine Meningitec.
- Advising Teva on the implementation of an internal process on lobbying regulations.
- Assisting Dedalus with the acquisition of Agfa HealthCare.
E-healthcare makes up a key part of work of the 'particularly technology-savvy' team at De Gaulle Fleurance & Associés, which brings together experts in data protection, regulatory and IT matters to assist clients such as L'Alliance Digitale contre le Covid-19 with the contractual, regulatory and personal health data issues surrounding product launches. The practice is jointly led by Jean-Marie Job and Cécile Théard-Jallu, both of whom are recognised regulatory and IT specialists, and Blandine Fauran, who has a strong track record in competition matters.
‘The firm has both deep expertise in specific legal issues, and a breadth of experience across industries. This combination is very helpful to us.‘
‘The firm is able to use all communications media and methods that we have adopted, and is particularly technology-savvy.‘
‘Cécile Théard-Jallu is an expert on data protection and life sciences issues. Importantly, she is always able to bring in other resources from her own group, and from other groups in the firm, to make sure that we can obtain excellent advice across the board.‘
Alliance digital maladiecoronavirus.fr
- Advising Club Inter Pharmaceutique on implementing and managing the national serialisation database.
- Advising L’Alliance Digitale contre le Covid-19 on the contractual, regulatory and personal health data issues around the launching of several IT tools.
With 'deep expertise and understanding of the pharmaceutical sector and its regulations', Fieldfisher is a go-to firm for providing regulatory assistance to laboratories and pharmaceutical companies. The team advises on the full spectrum of such issues, including market access, distribution, health data hosting and IT law, while on the contentious side it has strong experience in product liability cases. Olivier Lantrès, who 'truly understands the financial mechanisms of the medical sector', leads the department, specialising in regulatory work, specifically clinical trials, medical devices and pharmaceutical products. Lantrès also co-heads the firm's international life sciences practice.
‘The practice is particularly skilled in regulatory healthcare matters.‘
‘Extremely reactive, regular communication and a team that is always looking to improve. Specific billing options for biotech start-ups are appreciated.‘
‘Total understanding of the needs of their clients.‘
‘Olivier Lantrès’ precise advice combined with his timely interventions and constant availability make him a really useful asset for us.‘
‘Fieldfisher has deep expertise and understanding of the pharmaceutical sector and its regulations.‘
‘Olivier Lantrès is a recognised expert in the pharmaceutical sector. His advice is always to the point and draws on his longstanding experience.‘
‘Olivier Lantrès truly understands the financial mechanisms of the medical sector.‘
- Assisting a drug distributor in a fraud case involving the delivery of surgical masks.
- Assisting a professor of medicine in the context of the conduct of medical tests on patients in France.
Geneste & Devulder Avocats
Established in April 2019, boutique firm Geneste & Devulder Avocats advises pharmaceutical and medical tech clients on regulatory issues. In particular, the practice covers pricing and reimbursement, market access, clinical trials and advertising matters. With the ability to assist on cases governed by both European and French law, the department is also able to handle administrative litigation before the French Council of State. Founding partners Bernard Geneste and Marine Devulder are both highly regarded for competition and administrative law.
SNITEM (syndicat national de l’industrie des technologies médicales)
- Represented Chiesi in a matter related to social security reimbursement.
- Advised Syndicat National de l’Industrie des Technologies Médicales (SNITEM) regarding the 2020 Social Security Financing Act.
- Represented Philips in a case related to damage suffered as a result of an illegal certification procedure.
With a client list featuring leading domestic and global laboratories, the practice at Gide Loyrette Nouel A.A.R.P.I. is best known for its strength in patent litigation, covering the full range of related work. Highlights in the last year have included the granting and extension of patents, in addition to infringement and nullity actions; Raphaëlle Dequiré-Portier is the name to note for this work. Other key lawyers include Dimitri Dimitrov, who specialises in competition and distribution matters; the 'extremely knowledgeable' Anne Tolila, who handles transactional mandates; and Arnaud Duhamel, who is highly regarded for equity capital markets work in the sector, with a practice focused on securities offerings.
‘Gide is among my very favourite firms with which to work. The attorneys work as part of my company’s team and have learned all the hot buttons and negotiating positions of my company and provided consistently excellent support.‘
‘Anne Tolila is extremely knowledgeable and is very creative in finding solutions that will work under French law and still satisfy all of our expectations. She works very collaboratively with my company’s transactional teams.‘
Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS) and ONO Pharmaceuticals (Ono)
Sanofi-Aventis Deutschland GmbH.
J&J and Pfizer
Citi Group Global Market
- Acting for Ono Pharmaceutical in two appeals before the Paris court regarding the refusal by the French Patent Office of two SPCs.
- Assisted Inventiva in connection with its $102m IPO on Nasdaq.
- Advised EOS Imaging, a leader in 2D/3D imaging solutions, on a tender offer agreement for its acquisition by Alphatec Holdings, a US firm listed on Nasdaq.
With an 'in-depth understanding of the French healthcare market and biotech challenges', Hogan Lovells (Paris) LLP is particularly focused on high-profile product liability cases, where Christelle Coslin is a go-to name for cross-border and mass tort litigation. The department has an equally able regulatory group: Charlotte Damiano is retained by several major pharmaceutical companies to advise on pricing and reimbursement and market access issues, and practice head Mikael Salmela is a recognised regulatory expert specialising in bringing products to market from the earliest stages, including R&D and clinical trials. Stanislas Roux-Vaillard is the key contact for patent work, regularly defending patents in pharma and biotech cases.
Other key lawyers:
Charlotte Damiano; Christelle Coslin; Stanislas Roux-Vaillard
‘In-depth understanding of the French healthcare market and biotech challenges.‘
‘Mikael Salmela has very strong knowledge of the sector.‘
‘The team is above all well organised, competent and always available to answer complex questions.‘
‘The partners always ensure projects are on budget and that all legal analysis is precise and operational.‘
Merck & Co., Inc., and its French subsidiary MSD Vaccins
- Representing Icos Corporation in a dispute concerning the validity of the patent covering its product Cialis.
- Assisting Eli Lilly with the French aspects of a dispute over the generic version of its oncology product Alimta.
- Acting for Merck & Co., Inc., and its French subsidiary MSD Vaccins, in the defence of product liability claims brought by French plaintiffs in relation to alleged adverse effects of the vaccine Gardasil.
Retained by laboratories and medical device manufacturers, the life sciences practice at LexCase advises on regulatory matters spanning the full life cycle of healthcare products, from clinical trials through to market access. Practice co-head Diane Bandon-Tourret, who has 'an excellent network of contacts and a deep knowledge of the French healthcare system', also handles contentious work, notably serial product liability matters, and regularly appears before the French regulators. A differentiating feature of the group is its strong public law experience in the form of Alain de Belenet and Raphaël Apelbaum, who is dual-qualified in Paris and New York.
‘Very high level of competence, expertise and reactivity.‘
‘Agile collaborators and very adaptable to client needs.‘
‘Diane Bandon-Tourret is a driving force. She has an excellent network of contacts and a deep knowledge of the French healthcare system.‘
‘There is a very good digital infrastructure, which is used very well by the team. This is especially true for internal and external communication.‘
‘Diane Bandon-Tourret’s work stands out. Her content is excellent at all times and she delivers excellent work that stands out even under the greatest time pressure. She is also well connected in the healthcare sector and well acquainted with the structures of the healthcare system.‘
- Advised a major trade union in the medical devices industry on the drafting of distribution contracts with regards to the new European medical device regulation.
- Defended Philips against a challenge by the French Ministry of Health relating to the pricing of a medical device before the French Council of State.
- Assisted several clients of the Conference Bleue network in their discussions with the French National Agency for the Safety of Medicines and Health Products (ANSM) to obtain derogation for the placing of medical devices on the French market.
Winston & Strawn LLP's 'deep understanding of the market and technical understanding of the regulations' is highly valued by its diverse client portfolio of providers, clinics, laboratories, private equity funds and investors, with an offering covering regulatory, antitrust, corporate, litigation and financing matters. The transactional side of the practice has a strong track record for both M&A and private equity mandates; Jean-Patrice Labautière is particularly skilled in this area. Gilles Bigot leads the team, acting for a mix of domestic and European clients in both regulatory and contentious matters. Anne-Carine Ropars-Furet, Julie Vern Cesano-Gouffrant and Mathilde Lefranc-Barthe are further key contacts.
Other key lawyers:
Jean-Patrice Labautière; Anne-Carine Ropars-Furet; Julie Vern Cesano-Gouffrant; Mathilde Lefranc-Barthe
‘Deep understanding of the market and technical understanding of the regulations in question.‘
Groupe NEHS (former Mutuelle Nationale des Hospitaliers (MNH))
La Croix Rouge Française
Ramsay Générale de Santé
Sarah Santé Group
Telemos Capital / MedEuropa
TowerBrook Capital Partners
- Advised Omnes, a major private equity player, on its investment in a leveraged buyout of the BioFutur group, a group of medical biology analysis laboratories in the Île-de-France region.
- Advised Telemos Capital on the acquisition of a majority stake, by its subsidiary MedEuropa, in the Catalan Oncology Centre.
- Acted as lead legal adviser to Ipsos in relation to the acquisition of the healthcare custom research business of GfK.
BCTG Avocats is the adviser of choice for several healthcare generics companies, manufacturers and cosmetics labels, which benefit from the firm's broad expertise, covering production all the way through to sales. Practice head Hugues Villey-Desmeserets has a strong track record of advising on the establishment of commercial policies, and is experienced in representing clients before various professional associations, the French Competition Authority and the General Directorate for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF). The wider practice has also continued to develop its e-commerce capabilities.
STADA (EG Labo)
Johnson & Johnson Santé Beauté France
- Advised Teva Santé on defining its strategic policy.
- Advising EG Labo on the redefinition of its commercial policy.
- Assisting GenoSafe with the drafting and negotiation of partnership contracts.
Delsol Avocats is retained by several pharmaceutical and healthcare companies, typically to advise on data-related issues. Jeanne Bossi Malafosse specialises in this area, and has extensive experience in health information systems and GDPR compliance. Recent highlights have included advising CNOP on complying with data protection regulations, during which Bossi Malafosse also took on the role of data privacy officer. Regulatory expert Thomas Roche is another key member of the group, with a practice focused on clinical research.
- Advising members of the French Clinical Research Infrastructure Network (F-CRIN) on clinical research and health data.
- Assisting the French national pharmacists association CNOP with complying with data protection regulations and acting as data privacy officer.
DLA Piper's Paris team works closely with the global life sciences practice, representing major international healthcare, pharmaceutical and biotech companies. The practice's focus on the digitalisation of healthcare continues to grow and the team recently launched a guide, in partnership with Option Finance, covering the legal issues related to digital transformation. Group head Sonia de Kondserovsky is particularly active in M&A transactions and licensing agreements. Thanks to the firm's full-service offering, the department can also call on experts in regulatory, commercial, IT and data protection matters. Franck Valentin was a new arrival in 2021.
Other key lawyers:
Qualcomm Life – Capsule
West Pharmaceutical Services
- Advised Pierre Fabre on its sale to Fareva of two production sites in Idron and Saint Julien-en-Genevois, France.
- Advising Fortive Corporation on the acquisition of the advanced sterilisation products business of Ethicon, Inc., a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson.
- Advised Sterimed in connection with the entry into exclusive negotiations of Sagard with Meeschaert Capital Partners in order to take over the Sterimed group.
Operating at a 'high level', HBC Avocats' two-lawyer team specialises in negotiating and drafting commercial and licensing agreements and structuring transactions. Representing biopharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, the department is well versed in preparing contracts in respect of both R&D activities and clinical trials. Bringing together 'a commercial mindset and technical legal understanding', Jonathan Burnham, who is a member of the New York and Paris bars, leads the team, specialising in commercial agreements. Fabrice Herbin advises on R&D activities.
Other key lawyers:
‘The team operates at a high level, and is made up of specialists in the sector who understand the practical mechanisms of the industry.‘
‘Jonathan Burnham brings together a commercial mindset and technical legal understanding. He is bilingual and his operational experience is highly valued.‘
- Advised Novasep on the negotiation of its partnership agreement with AstraZeneca for the commercial production of the Oxford University/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine for Europe.
- Advised Theranexus on the negotiation of a worldwide exclusive collaboration and licensing agreement with a US charitable foundation for the development and commercialisation of a drug candidate to treat a juvenile orphan disease.
- Advised Emergence Therapeutics on the negotiation of its licensing and collaboration agreement with German biotechnology company Heidelberg Pharma.
With nine offices in Europe alone, Jones Day is a popular choice for global pharmaceutical and life sciences companies. On the corporate side, the department is particularly active in the pharmaceutical sector, while its capital markets team specialises in biotech and medtech issuances and offerings. The regulatory practice focuses on health and safety-related matters, including the implementation of EU regulations. In addition, Thomas Bouvet is a key name for patent-related work. Private equity specialist Renaud Bonnet and environmental litigator Françoise Labrousse jointly lead the department.
Other key lawyers:
Thomas Bouvet; Geoffroy Pineau-Valencienne
‘Geoffroy Pineau-Valencienne is a very available and valuable expert.‘
Mainstay Medical International Plc
Santen Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.
- Representing a global pharmaceutical company in a patent infringement action brought against several companies in relation to its patent and SPC covering a drug used to lower cholesterol.
- Represented Santen before the CJEU in a dispute over pharmaceutical patent term extensions.
- Advised Endocontrol, a French robotics company, and its main shareholders, Seventure Partners and ACG Management, in connection with its sale in a stock-for-stock transaction to Canady Life Sciences.
Lerins & BCW
Lerins & BCW is experienced in advising private clinics and investors acquiring healthcare facilities. The department has a strong track record in restructurings within the life sciences sector and has advised on the acquisition of majority and minority interests in companies. Another area of expertise is e-health, where the department provides regulatory advice covering online medical platforms, SaaS medical solutions and data privacy. Practice head Luc Castagnet is an expert in healthcare contract law.
‘The team is differentiated by its constant availability, reactivity and competence.‘
‘Lerins & BCW uses electronic signatures which we find very practical.‘
‘Luc Castagnet is available, competent and reactive.‘
Centre Hospitalier Metropole Savoie
Syndicat national des chirurgiens plastiques, reconstructeurs et esthétique (SNCPRE)
Centre Hospitalier d’Arles
Centre Hospitalier d’Angoulême
- Assisting the Vivalto Santé Group, the third-largest operator of private clinics in France, with its external growth and restructuring operations.
- Advising a hospital centre on establishing a private law health cooperation group (GCS).
- Advising a non-trading property investment fund (SCPI) dedicated to the healthcare field.
'Deeply innovative and highly responsive' boutique firm Mercure Avocats is equally balanced between regulatory and corporate expertise. Representing biotech, medtech and pharmaceutical companies, the department is best known for advising on M&A, fundraisings, GDPR, compliance issues, and partnership and licensing agreements. Co-head Agathe Simon, who 'combines excellent technical skills with a pragmatic approach', is a corporate specialist and is highly regarded for her contractual drafting skills. Her counterpart François-Maxime Philizot leads on regulatory matters, particularly in relation to pharmaceutical law.
‘Mercure is an outstanding firm. After 30 years’ experience, Mercure are the best I have worked with.‘
‘Mercure are deeply innovative and highly responsive.‘
‘Agathe Simon is superbly intelligent and highly adaptable, with remarkable negotiation skills. A deeply committed, gifted and highly responsive attorney.‘
‘The team is very responsive and knowledgeable.‘
‘Agathe Simon combines excellent technical skills with a pragmatic approach.‘
Correvio (now Advanz Pharma)
- Assisted the e-health division of a big pharma company with the negotiation and management of partnerships with medtech companies.
- Advised Odimma on a €1m fundraising.
- Assisted a big pharma company with the negotiation of R&D and distribution agreements relating to vaccines.
Norton Rose Fulbright advises pharmaceutical, medical device and biotech companies on every stage of the product life cycle, covering IP, regulatory and transactional work. Marion Roquette-Pfister, who specialises in public law and regulatory matters, represents clients in negotiations with public authorities relating to market access. Marta Giner Asins is the key contact for antitrust issues.
Michèle Anahory is the key name at Pech de Laclause Bathmanabane & Associés, focusing on market access, pricing and reimbursement, advertising and distribution issues. Anahory also defends clients before the French courts in contract, IP and competition litigation. The wider department represents several laboratories and medical device companies, and has assisted start-ups with digital projects.
Advising a diverse client base of laboratories, manufacturers, distributors, service providers and pharmaceutical companies, Reed Smith is recognised for its regulatory and data privacy expertise. The department also has strength in contentious matters thanks to Daniel Kadar, who is experienced in acting in cross-border disputes. Antitrust cases are also handled in-house; Marc Lévy and Natasha Tardif are the key contacts. Benoît Charot is highly regarded for product liability and insurance matters in the sector.
The core focus of the team at Squire Patton Boggs is product liability litigation, in which it typically defends pharmaceutical companies and medical device manufacturers in civil and criminal trials. The department has been instructed on class actions, mass tort litigation and surgical malpractice claims. Practice co-head Carole Sportes specialises in product liability litigation and is experienced in handling complex multi-jurisdictional disputes. Her fellow co-head Valérie Ravit is focused on insurance and reinsurance matters in this area and is well versed in expert appraisal proceedings.
Led by Evelyne Friedel, the team at Taylor Wessing is retained by pharmaceutical and medical device companies which rely on its expertise in regulatory, compliance and distribution issues. Friedel, who is experienced in drafting R&D, licensing and commercial agreements, is a specialist in competition and commercial matters, advising clients on both EU and French law. The wider practice has experience in the full range of regulatory matters in the pharmaceutical sector, including market access, pricing and reimbursement issues.
AWS (AMAZON WEB SERVICES) HEALTHCARE
CUTERA INC CUTERA FRANCE
W.L. GORE & ASSOCIATES
- Assisting Biotest AG with drafting and executing research and clinical trial agreements.
- Advised AWS Healthcare on regulatory issues related to the development of cloud services targeted at French healthcare practitioners and providers.
- Assisted Cutera France, a provider of aesthetic medical devices, on drafting and concluding leasing agreements.