Gulde & Partner strengthens offering with new Düsseldorf office

Gulde & Partner has opened an office in Düsseldorf, in doing so strengthening its presence across Germany. The firm will now be closer to one of the UPC's local chambers, as well as to the city's important regional and higher regional courts.

13 March 2023 by Mathieu Klos

Gulde & Partner Düsseldorf's 'Media Harbour' district is the new home of Gulde & Partner, which now has a presence across four German cities. ©saiko3p/ADOBE STOCK

At the beginning of March, the Berlin-headquartered patent firm Gulde & Partner opened its new office in Düsseldorf. Initially, the office will be staffed solely by patent attorneys, including Niklas Mellmann and Christian Salewski, who already worked for the mixed firm.

However, Petra Westphal has also moved from Hamburg-based firm Einsel to Gulde & Partner in Düsseldorf to strengthen its offering. Westphal, a chemist, worked in Bayer’s patent department between 2000 and 2020.

Gulde & Partner expands West

Nicolas Haße

Currently, all the Düsseldorf-based fee earners are patent attorneys. Mellmann, who joined Gulde & Partner in 2017, specialises in electronics and communications technology. Salewski joined the firm in 2020 and specialises in patents in process engineering, mechanical engineering and computers.

Berlin-based partner Nicolas Haße heads the office. With a focus on mobile communications, he has also led various patent infringement proceedings for Chinese mobile device manufacturers.

Capacities for UPC

Across Germany, Gulde & Partner has a mixed approach, working with both patent attorneys and lawyers. While the firm has a broad patent prosecution practice from its main office in Berlin, it also focuses on litigation, particularly in mobile phone cases.

For example, the firm’s patent attorneys were recently involved in several disputes for TCL, while a mixed litigation team represented another Chinese mobile device manufacturer, Haier, against Sisvel in two landmark Federal Court of Justice judgments. Hisense is also among the firm’s litigation clients.

In addition to Berlin and Düsseldorf, the firm has offices in Munich and Hamburg. As of 1 June, the cities of Düsseldorf, Munich and Hamburg will provide three of the four German local UPC chambers. Given its strong focus on Asian clients, the firm has also offices in Beijing, China, and Yokohama, Japan.

Niklas Mellmann

A spokesperson for the firm told JUVE Patent that, by opening an office in Düsseldorf, it intends to be in closer proximity to the city’s important patent court. Together, the Regional Court’s three patent chambers, and the Higher Regional Court’s two senates, are considered among the busiest patent courts in Europe, although Munich is beginning to catch up.

Client selection

In addition, Gulde & Partner wants to move closer to companies in the Rhine-Main region.

In the region, its patent attorneys already serve companies such as Thyssenkrupp in Essen, Elmos Semiconductor in Dortmund, Gira Giersiepen in Radevormwald, Insta from Lüdenscheid, and Albrecht Jung from Schalksmühle.

However, the firm also justifies the move given the UPC’s launch in June.  Especially on the legal side, law firms in Germany are currently positioning themselves massively for the upcoming court. At the turn of the year, Bardehle Pagenberg brought in three litigators from Meissner Bolte and Eisenführ Speiser. Clifford Chance has also strengthened its IP department with two patent partners from Hoyng ROKH Monegier.