The well-positioned patent team of this international full-service firm is best known for patent litigation for high-profile pharma clients. Linklaters positions itself on the side of innovators like Sanofi, MSD and ViiV/GSK, which the team frequently represents in cross-border litigation, joining forces with the offices in London and Frankfurt. The hiring of a dual-qualified counsel last year boosted the Paris team’s technical expertise in life sciences. She has a background in chemistry and biotechnology and also litigates for companies in oppositions before the EPO. Efforts by the practice to widen its client base away from its core focus on life sciences are bearing the first fruit: in the multi-party SEP proceedings against Intellectual Ventures, Pauline Debré’s team was on the side of co-defendant Lantiq (now Intel), broadening the practice’s footprint in telecommunications. The work in IP transactions in the energy, consumer goods, healthcare and transport sectors also harbours potential to litigate for clients in these sectors, too.
Pharma litigation, transactional work on IP.
Cooperation on the London-Frankfurt-Paris axis has been established at Linklaters for years. This is evidenced by high-profile cases for originator companies like ViiV/GSK and Sanofi, and the firm recently extended the collaboration to the key sector of information technology with work for Seoul Semiconductor. Nevertheless, Linklaters is not nearly as visible in pan-European mobile communications litigation as Hogan Lovells or Bird & Bird. But the firm has higher ambitions for cross-border disputes, especially at the UPC, for which it needs to develop a visible patent team in the Netherlands. The London team has so far not developed at such a dynamic rate as the offices on the continent and there is still some way to go to reach the level of top firms like Hogan Lovells, which litigate very consistently in cross-border disputes in all main European markets – despite having only slightly larger teams in London. With a dual-qualified counsel in Paris, the practice is taking its first steps towards positioning itself for the technical matters at the UPC, like European market leaders Hogan Lovells and Bird & Bird.
Pauline Debré (“experienced and high quality”, competitor)
6 lawyers, 1 dual qualified
Cross-border patent litigation, historically with a strong focus on life sciences. Representation of originator drugs manufacturers in pharmaceutical cases.
Litigation: Lantiq/Intel (defendant) against Intellectual Ventures over SEPs for DSL; Seoul Semiconductor (claimant) against a competitor regarding LEDs; Sanofi/Regeneron (defendants) against Amgen over cholesterol-lowering drug Repatha; ViiV/GSK (claimant) against Gilead over HIV inhibitor drug; Halozyme Therapeutics (claimant) against INPI over SEP application for Rituximab (all public knowledge). Frequent advice to MSD.