Next Generation Partners

Intellectual property in North

McDaniels Law

Boutique intellectual property firm McDaniels Law regularly handles matters that span multiple jurisdictions and has significant sector strengths including fashion, furniture, and homewares. The firm takes legal action on behalf of clients, taking their claims before a range of courts, it is particularly active before the IPEC. It also secures patents, trade marks and registered designs, in addition to providing a significant portfolio service. In the Gateshead office, established intellectual property rights expert Niall Head-Rapson leads the practice together with up-and-comer Kelly Hudson. Director Adam Turley oversees the Carlisle office.

Practice head(s):

Niall Head-Rapson; Kelly Hudson

Other key lawyers:

Adam Turley

Key clients

Damian Evans Design Limited

Equipment Supplies and Consultancy Services Limited

Hairjamm PTY

Fairfax & Favor Limited

Cormeton Fire Protection Limited

Teemo Designs Limited

Old English Company Limited

Transmit Start-Ups Limited

Photobooth Props Limited

Really Simple Ideas Limited

Work highlights

  • Representing Damian Evans Design Limited in a High Court claim concerning the interpretation of a contract, letter of understanding, and deed of variation which govern the licensing arrangement. Multi- jurisdictional and has the potential value of multi-millions.
  • Representing Cormeton Fire Protection Limited on a trade mark and copyright infringement and passing off and breach of contract claim issued in the IPEC. Client was successful in the liability trial, matter proceeds to quantum stage of proceedings.
  • Representing Equipment Supplies Limited in its potential claim against its former solicitor, Irwin Mitchell. The claim concerns professional negligence in Irwin Mitchell’s conduct of an intellectual property infringement claim it conducted against our client’s former partner. The potential value of this claim is expected to be over £1.5m.

Muckle LLP

Providing support that is described as ‘common sense and commercial’ the practice at Muckle LLP covers both contentious and non-contentious matters, with sector strengths in technology, sport, media and charity.  The Newcastle-based team is also regularly active in commercial transactions, contributing know-how regarding technology challenges and IP ownership issues. Alex Craig leads the practice, drawing long-standing experience in the practice area. ‘Professional, thorough, engaging‘ expert George Festing focuses on contentious IP matters. John Devine leads the sector strength in sports-related IP work with regards to image rights and sponsorship among others.

Practice head(s):

Alex Craig

Other key lawyers:

George Festing; John Devine

Testimonials

‘Muckle is known for being responsive, common sense and commercial and our experience of them reflects this. We have mainly worked with two partners and a solicitor all of whom have been very supportive and clear in their advice to us. The team have guided us through contract negotiations and creation of contract documentation for our growing and changing business and the team have listened hard to our requirements and reflected them well in their work.’

‘Alex Craig has been supportive in her work with us, directing us to third party providers where appropriate but recognising the importance of us deciding which to engage. She guided us through a funded IP audit process and gave us a clear steer on actions arising from that audit.’

‘A desire to understand our issues and guide us in and out of areas where we have little or no expertise. All of our contacts are engaging individuals who share a desire to provide solutions in a timely, professional and cost effective way.’

‘Our initial contact, George Festing, has guided us through a number of issues relating to disputes and copyright matters, all to successful conclusions. Professional, thorough, engaging and with an ability to distill an number of varied views into something salient and relevant.’

Key clients

Mandata Group Limited

Thunderful Group AB

City Football Group

CPL Limited

Meiyume (UK) Limited

The Algorithm People Limited

Thomas Swan & Co Limited

England Athletics Limited

Simpsons Malt Limited

Parkrun Limited

Work highlights

  • Acting for the Caribbean Premier League https://www.cplt20.com/, one of the three major international T20 cricket tournaments held annually.
  • Advised the selling shareholders, including the leading mid-market private equity fund LDC, on the sale of Mandata Group Limited to Tenzing private equity.
  • Advised Swedish listed company Thunderful Group AB on its acquisition of the entire issued share capital of Robot Teddy.

Ward Hadaway LLP

With a strong reputation in the technology start-up, entrepreneurial and creative sectors, the IP practice at Ward Hadaway LLP in Newcastle provides a wide range of advice from early business stages through to issues affecting established businesses. Particular expertise includes advising spin-out companies from the university sectors, and increasingly the life sciences sector. The team has a strong trade mark practice and also supports clients with research and development or international technology licensing. IP specialist Alex Shiel leads the practice together with Bill Goodwin who is a chartered trade mark attorney, and Judy Baker, an IT specialist.

Practice head(s):

Alex Shiel; Bill Goodwin; Judy Baker

Key clients

University of Newcastle upon Tyne

ScS Sofas

Tech Nation

Northern Space and Security

Newcastle Building Society

Be Modern

GlycoscoreDx

Cellularevolution

Gelmetix

PCCA

Mincoffs Solicitors LLP

Described as ‘proactive and diligent’, the team at Mincoffs Solicitors LLP is active in the creative and digital sectors as well as in education, with particular expertise in advising student and graduate incubators. Antony Hall heads up the team, specialising in advising on the intellectual property rights that exist in software. Stewart Irvine handles the contentious side of the practice, from patent infringement to copyright claims. Solicitor Hannah Flowers joined the firm in April 2021 from McDaniels Law.

Practice head(s):

Antony Hall

Other key lawyers:

Stewart Irvine; Hannah Flowers

Testimonials

‘Their willing to give up time and offer support for startups. Very approachable and responsive to requests for support from a senior level down. Happy to support on a one-to-one basis or workshops.’

‘I love how Mincoffs is a big enough firm to deal with all of my legal needs (which are diverse!) but small enough to have a friendly family feel and they’re local too!’

‘Every single person I have worked with at Mincoffs has been exceptional, but very special thanks to Antony Hall who is just wonderful. He listens carefully to our needs and then devises the best way forward and completes all work to an exceptionally high standard.’

‘Mincoffs are a commercial practice in the North East of England which I consider to have the same skill set and quality of advice as much larger International competitors but with a much more approachable local feel. I would generally direct most commercial enquiries here.’

‘A willingness to appreciate the early stage nature of individuals being supported through the University with their ideas & to tailor advice & guidance accordingly – varied forms of delivery.  Being approachable & non-judgemental critical in assisting in building relationship with early stage entrepreneurs.’

‘The team are proactive and diligent. They follow the project through to completion and managed completely with minimal input from me.’

‘They offer an excellent holistic service to businesses at a realistic price and have recently expanded their team to handle more work.’

‘The individuals are helpful, friendly and therefore approachable, especially Antony Hall the commercial partner.’

Key clients

Coatsink Software Limited

Northumbria University

University of Sunderland

Durham University

Little Learners Franchise Limited

CareYourWay Homecare Ltd

Fred Golf Limited

Steamforged Games Limited

Plaza Collection Limited

Signifo Ltd

Work highlights

  • Retained by video game development studio and publisher Coatsink Software as external legal advisors. Supporting the company on a range of licensing arrangements and publishing deals including advising them on a licensing deal with Universal Studios LLC relating to the development and publication of a video game titled Jurassic World Aftermath on the Oculus platform. The deal involved complex licensing arrangements with multiple stakeholders, including Amblin Studios, and involved securing performing rights from members of the cast of the original film franchise.
  • Advising Northumbria University’s Student and Graduate Enterprise programme, a highly successful incubator that supports graduate start-ups, since October 2019. This involves supporting graduate start-ups with a variety of university-funded interventions. Work has included undertaking intellectual property audits for businesses, helping graduate start-ups protect registerable intellectual property with registrations and structuring spinout licensing deals.
  • Engaged by Steamforged to negotiate a merchandising licence agreement with Jagex (developer and publisher of video games including the flag ship online game RuneScape).

Keystone Law

The team at Keystone Law acts on a range of IP disputes as well as providing non-contentious advice. Clients include not only multinational corporates that are household names but also start-ups. Will Sander is a UK and European chartered trade mark and design attorney. His broad practice ranges from protection and monitoring to exploitation of IP, with international capabilities.

Other key lawyers:

Will Sander

Key clients

Unilever

Max Halley

Kundun

Thane

Life Health Foods

Aerus LLC

Articulate!

Hottinger Investment Management Limited

Lumon Pay

Zero Carbon Farms

Work highlights

  • Advising Zero Carbon Farms on multiple IP matters, including the protection of its trade mark portfolio (which has resulted in filings within the UK, EU and internationally), and a wide-range of commercial transactional matters which are heavily IP dependent.
  • Advising Kundun on multiple trade mark invalidity and opposition actions in the UK and EU relating to the iconic JENSEN and INTERCEPTOR brands which refer to the iconic 1970s car of the same name.
  • Undertook multiple trade mark (and related IP) matters for Life Health Foods. Currently this involves trade mark prosecution matters covering or anticipated to cover the UK, EU, USA and Australia.

Sintons LLP

With Karen Simms, Graeme Ritzema and senior associate Pippa Aitken leading the team, the Newcastle-based team at Sintons LLP advises a broad range of clients with particular sector strengths in healthcare and technology. Simms is an experienced commercial and corporate lawyer while Aitkins is an active practitioner with expertise in brand protection and trademark portfolio management. Hilary Waters has strengthened the practice’s contentious offering.

Practice head(s):

Pippa Aitken; Karen Simms; Graeme Ritzema

 

Other key lawyers:

Chloe Dinsdale; Hilary Waters

Key clients

Happy Brain Co Limited

Northumberland Estates Limited (Alnwick Castle)

The Medway NHS Foundation Trust

Trade Interchange Limited

Livitay Limited trading as Sanctuary

Headbox Solutions Limited

Academic Health Science Network for the North East and North Cumbria (“AHSN”)

Cambridge Education Group

Healthcall Limited

The Society for Cardiological Science and Technology (“SCST”)

Sapphire Technologies Limited

Space Architects (Europe) Limited

Barker and Stonehouse Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised The Medway NHS Foundation Trust on a Trade Mark Licence Agreement in relation to a lottery being run by a Hospice.
  • Advised Healthcall Solutions Limited in relation to a digital outpatient service to be provided to NHS bodies. This included advice on ownership and licensing of intellectual property rights.
  • Advised Happy Brain Co Limited in relation to its brand protection, copyright ownership in its book and licensing arrangements.