Intellectual Property: Northern Ireland
Sources say "the firm is a very trustworthy, professional organisation, more proactive in engaging with their customers, and better at providing networking opportunities than other firms in the market." One recent highlight for the firm was advising Iconi Software on an agreement to develop a web-based software. Its clients in IP include major UK and international corporations across a variety of sectors, including software, telecoms and pharmaceuticals.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Associate Ivan Waide "is a brilliant lawyer, the best I've had the privilege of working with. His knowledge of IP was incredible," sources say. His recent practice includes advising both suppliers and customers on complex IP-licensing deals.
The IP team at this firm advises the University of Ulster on exploitation, licensing and spin-off company work. Other IP clients include many global companies, including Siemens, BMW and Thompson Aerospace. Sources comment favourably on the firm's international reach: "They have a lot of worldwide contacts, which is very useful to our business."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Alan Taylor continues to impress sources with the quality of his IP advisory work, which they describe as "of the highest possible order." He heads the IP team at Arthur Cox.
Sources state that in IP, Carson McDowell "is one of Northern Ireland's prime firms, with a strong reputation which goes along with it." This formidable reputation is perpetuated by the "incredibly pragmatic and valuable advisers" which the firm houses in this department. The team is particularly renowned for advising on foreign direct investment into research and development projects. Key clients include Thermblow, Jar Technologies and Re-Bound Products.
KEY INDIVIDUALS IP head Declan Magee continues to be well regarded by his peers for his expertise in this area. He has recently advised Seagate Technologies on the defence of a patent infringement case brought by Siemens Technology.
Dawn McKnight "is impressive for her deep technical ability, great experience, great legal knowledge and the appropriateness of the advice she gives." She has recently advised Schrader Electronics on a research and development collaboration.
This firm is recognised for the quality of its specialist IP offering. Many of the firm's lawyers have previous in-house experience at technology firms, which is seen as a major advantage by many clients. Sources say: "The culture of Tughans as a firm is very positive and impressive. They are professional, informed and easy to work with." Key clients include Intelesens, Kelvatek and MD Golf.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Adrian O'Connell "is a thorough and intelligent lawyer - he gets straight to the point, and is always very helpful." He has recently advised MD Golf on a worldwide licensing negotiation.
Cleaver Fulton Rankin's IP team continues to expand and is heavily involved in the IP community at the Northern Ireland Science Park. The firm was recently appointed as sole adviser to the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute of Northern Ireland, which it advises on IP commercialisation and protection. Clients are impressed with the strength in depth at this firm, and comment on the firm that "the advice they've given is comprehensive and of a high quality."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Scott Kennedy is widely recognised as an expert in IP matters. Sources say: "He is pragmatic and proactive in his advice, and his strong reputation is for helping companies get started, and preparing them for future growth."
This former office of McGrigors became part of the Pinsent Masons network following the recent merger of the two firms. The IP team is able to handle both contentious and non-contentious matters across a wide range of industry sectors, including life sciences, energy and food and drink. Sources say: "They have a good spread of experience and knowledge and are very supportive lawyers."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Paul McBride is the key contact for IP matters at the firm.
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23 May 2013: Chambers USA Awards for Excellence 2013, New York
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10 September 2013: Launch of Chambers Latin America 2014, online
3rd October 2013: Chambers Bar Awards 2013, London
10 May 2012: Chambers Europe Awards for Excellence, Amsterdam