BarentsKrans – Netherlands 2021
The patent litigation team of this national full-service firm is well positioned in the Dutch patent market. BarentsKrans was able to bring its vast experience in life sciences into play thanks to the general rise in such cases at the Dutch patent courts.
The team is mainly known for assisting generic drug companies such as Stada, Teva and Insud in disputes over pharmceutical and biosimilar drugs. When it comes to litigation, Jaap Bremer and Marleen van den Horst do not only work for generics manufacturers.
The team frequently benefits from a sturdy network of international firms, which frequently call on it for the Dutch parts of European disputes. Together with Gowling, Marleen van den Horst frequently advises InterDigital. Although the team is not actively appearing in the courtroom for mobile communications companies at present, it often advises in the background on potential lawsuits involving SEPs in the Netherlands.
The firm showcased its experience in patent proceedings across a broad technical spectrum with work for Ciel et Terre involving innovative solar panels and for Unilin concerning floor coverings. To continue serving these clients comfortably and to handle more top-level mobile communications cases, the team must and is planning to grow by two associates. Compared to market leaders such as IP boutique Brinkhof and patent teams at other Dutch national firms like De Brauw, it remains small.
The work of Jaap Bremer and Marleen van den Horst not only focuses on litigation. In line with the overall firm’s pronounced M&A specialty, they are very active advising Benelux companies on major licensing deals or technology investments. Advice to Blommaert and Mourik, for instance, has kept the small team very busy of late. Raising the headcount is therefore necessary if the firm is to manage effortlessly the balancing act between courtroom and data room.
Strong focus on litigation regarding pharma patents, especially for generic drug companies.
The team has its own international network. As the UPC is looking likely to launch again, the BarentsKrans team would do well to work on more exclusive ties to other firms, to prepare for the opening of the court in good time. The BarentsKrans team might be attractive, for example, for German and UK firms with a strong life sciences focus.
Selected partnerships with patent teams in key jurisdictions could also help both parties, through joint acquisition activity, to be more attractive for companies when they award cross-border instructions or in future UPC cases. It is here that the patent teams in national full-service firms like BarentsKrans face tough competition from internationally positioned teams such as Hogan Lovells or Bird & Bird. But like all patent teams in national full-service firms, the BarentsKrans team will have to coordinate with the firm as a whole if it wants to enter into more exclusive cooperations with other European teams.
Jaap Bremer (“always delivers high quality”, competitor), Marleen van den Horst (“very strong in pharma disputes”, competitor about both)
2 partners, 2 associates
IP advice with a strong focus on patent litigation and life science patents. Arbitration, entitlement actions, licences, R&D agreements and transactions.
Litigation: Nutrition Sciences (claimant) against NOBA regarding enforcement and revocation of a patent for fatty acids in livestock feed; Insud Pharma (claimant) in nullity case against Galenicum’s patent over pharmaceutical compositions comprising crystalline sitagliptin hydrochloride; Ciel & Terre (claimant) against Profloating over photovoltaic panels; Stada and Teva (defendants) against MSD regarding SPC for ezetimibe/simvastatin before Dutch Supreme Court; Unilin (defendant) against I4F in revocation case over flooring technology (settled); frequent litigation for Interdigital. Advice: Neokidney Foundation regarding strategic portfolio management and licence agreements for a portable artificial kidney; Rollepaal on agreements following a dispute regarding patents over tubing technology; Blommaert regarding collaboration and agreement with third party on developing solar hatches; Mourik on licensing transactions with energy companies over sustainable technology.