JUVE Patent

Rankings Germany 2022

df-mp Dörries Frank-Molnia & Pohlman – Germany 2022

JUVE Comment

This pure patent attorney firm has been at the top of the market for years with its impressive number of high-profile cases. The patent attorneys of the Munich firm were again exceptionally visible on the side of lawyers in extensive infringement proceedings. External lawyers call on the technical experts from df-mp particularly often for top-level disputes over mobile communications and software patents.

A team led by David Molnia advised Nokia, for example, on its dispute with Oppo alongside Bird & Bird and Arnold Ruess. In these global mega-proceedings, Nokia also relied on three other teams of German patent attorneys. Dominik Ho provided support to client Sonos in the battle against Google on the side of EIP Europe. The practice is also well known for its frequent litigation for NPEs, including Unwired Planet, Fipa and IPCom regarding SEPs. This should offer a solid basis for future connected cars proceedings.

In addition to nullity suits, where df-mp is active across a wide range of technologies, EPO oppositions play a central role, especially for life sciences clients; the team around Hans-Ulrich Dörries, Elisabeth Greiner and Sandra Pohlman is particularly active for clients from pharma and medical technology. Df-mp always operates at the forefront of developments, for instance for Pfizer as opponent against CureVac’s mRNA vaccine patent or for Amgen against eight strawman opponents concerning a therapeutic agent of the new biologics generation. Clients such as Sandoz and Hexal also ensure a steady stream of work, especially in oppositions and appeals before the EPO. Df-mp was seen of late in infringement proceedings over pharma patents, albeit less often than competitor König Szynka.

A large number of well-known clients also trust in the firm for prosecution work, ensuring a good utilisation rate. With its healthy age structure and frequent trainee development, the firm also has a strong firm structure.

Strengths

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

European set-up

Although df-mp is frequently involved in international patent proceedings such as those for Nokia in the global dispute against Oppo over 4G and 5G patents or for its many top-level pharma clients in EPO oppositions, 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.

With many distinguished litigation specialists among the partners who could conduct UPC cases alone without external lawyers, df-mp is likely to play a major role at the UPC from day one. This is especially true of their work for NPEs, which are said to want to use the new court as soon as it launches.

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 (“highly competent, thorough, motivated, the right flair for litigation and a high level of personal dedication”, “very entrepreneurial, advances the firm”, competitors), Sandra Pohlman

Team

39 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: Nokia (claimant) against Oppo over mobile communications; Fipa/IPCom (claimant) against mobile communication companies over SEPs; InterDigital (claimant) against Oppo/One Plus over SEPs; Sonos (defendant) against Google over patents for the control of sound systems via mobile phone (all public knowledge). EPO oppositions for Amgen (defendant) against eight strawman opponents regarding bispecific monoclonal antibodies; Pfizer (opponent) against CureVac’s mRNA vaccine patent; Pfizer (opponent) against GSK’s RSV immunisation patent; Amgen (opponent) against Regeneron’s PCSK9-inhibitor patent; Hexal (opponent) against Boehringer Ingelheim regarding opposition suit over diabetes drug linagliptin; Ceva Santé Animale (opponent) against Bayer over veterinary drug Baycox Iron; strawman opposition against Roche’s bevacizumab patent; strawman opposition against the universities of California and Vienna/Emmanuelle Charpentier over CRISPR/Cas; strawman opposition against several Philips patents; Toll Collect (opponent) against Kapsch TrafficCom and Audi regarding communications in toll systems. Prosecution: patent filing for Amgen, Arxada, Biogen, Caterpillar, Ebay, Fresenius Medical Care, HPI, Krones, Lonza, Lohmann, Paypal, Showa, Toll Collect, Unigen and Webasto (all public knowledge).

Location

Munich