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Dr. Gopakumar G. Nair , CEO

GNAs was founded by Dr. Gopakumar G. Nair in 2002 after serving nearly 35 years in Pharma Industry and 5 years in R&D related to NMR and Pharma. Dr. Nair was interviewed as follows

Why and how you founded GNAs in India?

India had no product patents for Food, Pharma and Chemicals from 1970, when the Indian Patent Law was amended.  Since ‘Licence of Right’, a form of automatic Compulsory Licence provision was incorporated in the 1970 amendment of the Patents Act, 1970, there was very little interest and activity in the Patent protection related research.  Consequent to India joining WTO and TRIPs, there was an urgent need for India to become proficient in IPR and Patents.  Even though there were many IP firms in India, few were exposed to the TRIPs and consequent amendments to Indian Patent Law.  Dr. Nair was already active through IDMA (Indian Drug Manufacturers’ Association) in India’s interactions with US Secretaries of State, Sir Arthur Dunkel (Dunkel Draft) and the negotiators on behalf of India at Geneva.  It was the need to fill a gap to create awareness and to empower IPR learning and protection that prompted Dr.Nair to enter IP field in 2002 after sale through M&A of his public limited company.

Why is GNAs different and outstanding in Indian IP practice?

First of all, GNAs was persuaded by leading Indian pharma entrepreneurs to commence IP practice to help them.  IDMA, with whom Dr. Nair had served as office bearer and eventually President from 1972 to 2000, was an Association of wholly Indian entrepreneurs who believed in and practiced self-reliance and import-substitution.  Since the National spirit was in Dr.Nair’s genes, GNAs commenced assisting wholly Indian companies to become IPR compliant and efficient in innovation based patent protection.  Dr. Nair took his Law (LLB) degree from Mumbai University and set up a team of young Law and Technology professionals to serve the cause and set up IP practice.  Over the years, GNAs has probably grown to be the largest filing Patent Agent of home-grown inventions and Indian origin patent applications.  Having participated intensively in IP policy and Patent law amendments to make the Patents Act, 1970 to be TRIPs compliant, GNAs was well-exposed and well-adapted to the new Indian Patent Law provisions.  This helped GNAs to emerge as a leading Indian Patent Practitioner and later as a Trade Marks Practitioner looking after the interests of entrepreneur based wholly Indian companies, academicians and grass root inventors.

What are the major achievements of GNAs and associated entities in last nearly 20 years?

First of all, ‘GNA Patent Gurukul’, the training wing of GNAs has imparted training to hundreds of professionals from all walks of life and technical field to become patent proficient, so much so the protection of inventions through patenting has become a habit in India.  Technology transfer initiatives through GNAs and Patent Bazaar is also outstanding.  GNAs have emerged over the years as one of the largest patent filing IP Attorneys in India, who files patent applications for Indian origin innovations by Indian researchers and inventors.  The provision to oppose published patent applications (instead of third-party observations) is unique in India.  GNAs has emerged as the largest filer or support provider for filing pre-grant oppositions in India.  Most of these pre-grant oppositions have led to rejection of weak or frivolous patent applications prior to grant or led to settlement between parties.  Post-grant opposition filings on behalf of Indian Companies is another area with high success rate of GNAs.  Dr. Nair’s team also assists research and documentation in enforcement litigation and more in defence of infringement suits and injunction applications as well as counterclaims for revocation.

Is GNAs active only in field of patents?

Eventhough GNAs commenced its operations through patents, today GNAs are extremely active in the field of Trade Marks both in filing of TM Applications and TM related disputes and litigations.  Our partner Mr. Sajeevkumar Nair, who has specialised in TM is specialising in this field and has built a large client base, image and reputation.  GNAs is also active in Designs, Copyrights and Contractual agreement draftings.   Our Associate Company, Gnanlex Hermeneutics Pvt. Ltd. provides KPO/LPO consultancy to many leading research institutions in India such as National Chemical Laboratory (CSIR group) and IISER (Indian Institute of Scientific Education and Research) as well as many corporates.  Providing PNIS (Patent Non-infringement Status) and FTO (Freedom to Operate) opinions is a major area of activities of GNAs group.  Prior art search-based Patentability Opinions is a key area of GNAs expertise.

Who are your major clients?

We consider client confidentiality and data protection with high degree of respect and commitment.  Eventhough, we may not disclose all, we are proud to say we have a large client base in hundreds commencing with CIPLA, IPCA, GODREJ, GARWARE WALLROPES, OLENE, MAKERS, HALEWOOD, IND-SWIFT, BENSARA, KPIT, EVEREST, FERTIS, FUTURE, GUFIC, INDOCO, FDC, LEILA, M&M, SAREX, AVRA, SANZYME, HARMAN, FOURRTS, CLEARSYNTH, MEGAWECARE, many Universities and Institutes and others.

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