JUVE Patent

Rankings Germany 2021

df-mp Dörries Frank-Molnia & Pohlman – Germany 2021

JUVE Comment

The patent attorneys at this Munich IP boutique are standing their ground at the top of the market for patent litigation. It is not only EPO oppositions and nullity suits that play an important role: the patent attorneys are particularly active in infringement proceedings. Unlike competitor König Szynka, they impress with both a strong presence in pharma and biotech actions and in equally top-class mobile communications cases. Ddf-mp, similarly to competitor Cohausz & Florack, has built up a sizeable team of renowned patent attorneys for litigation. With its healthy age structure and frequent trainee development, the firm also has a strong firm structure.

The patent attorneys often partner with external lawyers. Litigation for new client InterDigital in an anti-suit injunction against Xiaomi drew much attention. Here, mobile communications experts Dominik Ho and David Molnia fought alongside the Düsseldorf-based lawyers from Arnold Ruess. The case broke new legal ground.

Df-mp also litigated with Arnold Ruess for claimant Nokia and for EIP Conversant against Daimler in connected cars suits, which were central proceedings last year. These have now been settled, but the df-mp patent attorneys’ vast experience with SEPs should offer a solid basis for future connected cars proceedings, which are expected. The practice is also well known for its frequent litigation for NPEs, including Unwired Planet, Fipa and IPCom regarding SEPs.

The team around Hans-Ulrich Dörries, Elisabeth Greiner and Sandra Pohlman was equally visible in pharma and biotech proceedings. The latter was one of the strawman opponents who recently destroyed a patent for the key CRISPR/Cas technology of Sigma-Aldrich before the EPO Boards of Appeal. The firm boasts a very strong relationship with Amgen, even though a pan-European case against Sanofi concerning a strong-selling cholesterol-lowering drug was lost. Clients such as Pfizer, Sandoz, Zoetis and Hexal ensure a steady stream of work, especially in oppositions and appeals before the EPO.

A large number of well-known clients also trust in the firm for prosecution work, ensuring a good utilisation rate.

Strengths

Litigation concerning pharma and mobile telecommunications patents. Technical breadth of prosecution practice

European strategy

Although df-mp is frequently involved in international patent proceedings, it sees no reason to have an office abroad or join forces with lawyers. With its strong focus on litigation, the firm would have fewer conflicts of interest than those placing greater emphasis on prosecution. So far, the firm’s success proves this strategy right.

Recommended individuals

Hans-Ulrich Dörries (“very good in litigation and presentation”, competitor), David Molnia (“outstanding expertise, known for completing cases promptly and to a high standard”, competitor), Elisabeth Greiner (“very experienced in pharma litigation, cooperative and collegial”, competitor), Dominik Ho (“prepares cases well and in detail”, competitor), Sandra Pohlman

Team

31 patent attorneys

Specialties

Patent prosecution, as well as extensive activity in oppositions and nullity suits with clear specialties in pharmaceuticals, medical technology, electronics and telecoms. Infringement claims with external lawyers, in trademarks with its own lawyers.

Clients

Litigation: Amgen (claimant) against Sanofi on cholesterol-lowering drug; strawman objection against Sigma-Aldrich over CRISPR/Cas; Amgen (claimant) against Regeneron over CSK9 inhibitors; Develco Pharma (claimant) against Grünenthal over painkiller Tapentadol; Hexal (claimant) against Boehringer Ingelheim over diabetes drug linagliptin; Pfizer (claimant) against GSK over RSV immunisation regime and streptococcal vaccine; Pfizer (claimant) against CureVac on mRNA vaccine for cancer; Teva (claimant) against Klosterfau over nose sprays; Teva (claimant) against Novartis over tumour drug everolimus; Zentiva (claimant) against Jazz Pharmaceuticals over sedative; Zentiva (claimant) against Novartis over MS drug fingolimod; InterDigital (claimant) against Xiaomi over mobile communications (public knowledge); Wsou and Invte (both claimants) against Apple, Huawei and ZTE; France Brevet (claimant) against Apple; Wiko (defendant) against Ericsson (all over mobile communications); Nokia and Conversant (both claimants) against Daimler over connected cars (settled in 2020/21); regular litigation for Unwired Planet, Fipa and IPCom over mobile communications (all claimants); Jaguar Land Rover (defendant) against VW over refuelling technology. Prosecution: strawman suits against several Philips patents; strawman suits against Roche’s bevacizumab patent; Toll Collect (opponent) against Kapsch TrafficCom and Audi in opposition suit regarding communications in toll systems; Fresenius Medical Care (claimant) against competitors regarding opposition suit over medical devices; Ceva Santé Animale (claimant) against Bayer regarding opposition suit over veterinary drug Baycox Iron; filing for Amgen, Biogen, Caterpillar, Ebay, Eli Lilly, Fresenius Medical Care, Ledvance, Krones, Lonza, Paypal and Webasto (all public knowledge).

Location

Munich