Please wait while the page is loading...

loader

THE WINNERS OF THE ASIA IP 2022 AWARDS

17 February 2023

THE WINNERS OF THE ASIA IP 2022 AWARDS

Toasting the winners

Despite our hopes – and everyone’s best efforts – to make the 2022 Asia IP Awards a live event, thanks to lingering effects (and Asia travel restrictions) of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Awards were held only in the pages of this magazine.

Like you, we’ve missed what used to be our annual opportunity to connect with you in person, either in one of Asia’s leading cities or at a fantastic resort location. We harbour hope that, in late 2023, we might once again have that opportunity.

As we evaluated the 2022 Asia IP Awards nominations and came up with our shortlist earlier this year, we were reminded how well lawyers in the region have adapted to the pandemic. As recently as 2019, some firms and jurisdictions struggled to fully adapt to lawyering in a digital world. Some, no doubt, still do. But many of the best firms quickly adapted to phenomena such as working from home, holding digital conferences with clients and even appearing in virtual courtrooms, in front of what are still very real judges who have made the same adaptations to their work methods. We’ve all become experts in using Zoom and other digital tools, whether we wanted to or not.

The 2022 Asia IP Awards have been expanded to include a new jurisdiction, recognizing the best overall intellectual property work done in Nepal. Apex Law Chamber in Kathmandu is the winner of that inaugural award. We also honour three firms for the depth and breadth of their Asia-Pacific regional work: Baker McKenzie, Bird & Bird and Dentons. The rest of the winners are in the following pages.

 

 

 

 

– ASIA IP

Australia

Australia Copyright Firm of the Year

Ashurst Australia’s intellectual property team provides a complete range of contentious and non-contentious specialist IP services. It has an excellent reputation for providing cutting-edge advice on strategic IP matters, acting for some of the world’s leading companies. The full-service firm has over 375 partners among 1,600 lawyers and staff in 25 offices throughout Australia and the Pacific region to provide corporate services in conjunction with IP support. Key members of the team are Lisa Ritson, Anita Cade, Kellech Smith, Stuart D’Aloisio and Nina Fitzgerald. Paul Jenkins, who is based in Sydney and London, is the firm’s global managing partner.

Australia Patents Firm of the Year

Davies Collison Cave was acquired by QANTM IP Limited in 2016 and is now part of the Australian Securities Exchange-listed firm of over 370 employees across key offices in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Singapore. DCC continues to operate as an independent business with former partners retaining over 50 percent interest in QANTM and restructuring to enable increased investment in IT and other systems innovation and expansion into other jurisdictions. The firm has been involved in a series of groundbreaking decisions concerning AI inventorship and the AI machine DABUS. Australia was the first jurisdiction worldwide in which a court held that AI can be an inventor, and more recently became “the first jurisdiction to permanently power down the DABUS dispute,” principals Claire Gregg and David Webber said. DCC filed the DABUS application in Australia, and has filed a corresponding application in Singapore, taking advantage of the late national phase entry provisions. DCC has boosted its presence in Asia recently with the opening of an office in Hong Kong, and an integration with Malaysian firm Advanz Fidelis, where the combined practice is known as DCC Advanz. Diversity Council Australia named DCC an “Inclusive Employer” for 2022-2023.

Australia Trademarks Firm of the Year

Allens is known for an acclaimed practice with expertise across the full gamut of intellectual property matters. The firm has maintained an integrated alliance with Linklaters since 2012. IP practice leader Miriam Stiel is a member of the Management Committee of the Copyright Society of Australia, the Editorial Board of the Australian Intellectual Property Law Bulletin and the Anti-Counterfeiting Committee of the International Trademark Association. Stiel has acted in some of Australia’s most significant IP cases, including in trademarks, breaches of confidential information, misleading and deceptive conduct, passing off, copyrights and patents.

Bangladesh

Bangladesh IP Firm of the Year

With over a decade of experience, Bepary & Bepary specializes in IP protection of all kinds, such as patents, trademarks, copyrights, industrial designs and domain names as well as contentious proceedings and litigation. With a robust team composed of lawyers, advocates and IP professionals, the firm ably and effectively assists clients around the world for their IP rights prosecution and protection. The firm’s client base runs the full spectrum, from individual entrepreneurs to leading educational institutions to multinational companies, some of which are among the largest business enterprises in the world. They include Kia, Perfetti van Melle, Wipro, Moderna and Queen’s University Belfast.

Brunei

Brunei IP Firm of the Year

Established in 1986, Abrahams, Davidson & Co is one of the largest firms in the country. The firm advises both local and international clients, including individuals, entrepreneurs, companies, multinationals and government bodies. Its IP practice primarily offers advice and provides trademark registration services. Partner Ahmad Basuni Hj Abbas is a key contact of the firm; the firm has four partners and eight associates practicing civil law, as well as two shariah practitioners and more than 35 support staff members.

Cambodia

BNG Legal has a deep understanding of the local business environment and culture, which has led to the firm being recognized as one of the leading IP firms in the country. Services offered include trademark search and registration, due diligence, licensing, franchising, anti-counterfeiting and enforcement. Principal partner Darwin Hem is a key contact for patent matters; Keopichchenda Long is another, as she heads the IP and technology practice group. The firm is also active in Myanmar. The firm has advised a global car and machinery manufacturer on anti-counterfeit measures, developing and implementing practical solutions to combat counterfeits entering the Cambodian market. It has one of the leading IP prosecution practices in Cambodia.

China

China International Copyright Firm of the Year

Bird & Bird established its Hong Kong office in 1995, followed by Beijing in 2004 and Shanghai in 2008. The international firm entered into an association with local firm Lawjay Partners in 2009 to increase coverage in contentious IP matters in Chinese courts. The China and Hong Kong team is led by partner Matthew Laight, who has represented some of the world’s highest-profile companies in a broad range of sectors including electronics, pharmaceuticals, communications, information technology, media, broadcasting, and food and beverage.

China International Patents Firm of the Year

Baker McKenzie has offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, and maintains an impressive team of IP specialists backed by an international network. Shanghai-based partner Clement Ngai focuses on pharmaceutical/regulatory issues and technology transactions in China, and handle IP litigation involving technology, including patent and trade secret cases. He has advised many multinational corporations on work within China, including on IP protection strategies as R&D centres in China, and on an MOU with a Chinese provincial government to develop the photovoltaic industry. He has advised a U.S. pharma client in a trade secret infringement lawsuit which was selected as a Top 10 IP Case by the Supreme People’s Court.

China International Trademarks Firm of the Year

Rouse has been operating in China since 1993, and now has offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen as well as its sister firm Rouse Legal in Hong Kong. The firm handles all activities reserved to China-admitted lawyers through its network firm, Lusheng Law Firm, and provides a full range of IP services including patent and trademark agency services. Hatty Cui is general manager of the firm’s China business and head of the China trademark group; she has served many of the top multinational companies entering the Chinese market, as well as assisting fast-growing Chinese enterprises in their global expansion efforts. Former China country manager Linda Chang is now deputy CEO of the firm and based in London; she was one of the first trademark agents to become qualified under China’s IP regulatory system.

Hong Kong

Hong Kong Copyright Firm of the Year

Deacons’ IP practice remains one of the best among the city’s firms. It has one of the largest specialist IP teams in Hong Kong, with 11 partners and more than 110 staff in total. The firm has consistently been one of the top copyright practices in Hong Kong, with a team that has embraced the challenges brought about the internet, file sharing and digital copying. The firm provides its clients with innovative solutions to protect copyright and police copyright infringement. The firm is noted for creating tailor-made copyright audits for companies to ensure that their copyrights are properly identified and protected, as well as how to implement policies and procedures to avoid infringing third-party copyright.

Hong Kong Patents Firm of the Year

Baker McKenzie has offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, and maintains an impressive team of IP specialists backed up by an international network. China and Hong Kong IP practice head Loke-Khoon Tan also co-leads the firm’s luxury and fashion industry practice, working extensively with global brands in major jurisdictions.

“It is extremely gratifying to be selected as the leading Hong Kong Patents Firm of the Year once again,” says Isabella Liu, the Asia Pacific chair of Baker McKenzie’s IP and technology practice. “The spread of the categories in which we won is a testament to the strength of our IP practice across the region. We look forward to continuing to support our clients in all their IP strategies and objectives across the Asia Pacific region.”

Hong Kong Trademarks Firm of the Year

Well-respected Ella Cheong and Alan Chiu head Hong Kong-based ELLALAN; Chiu is the firm’smanaging partner. The firm, which until June 2020 had been known as Ella Cheong & Alan Chiu, advises on IP enforcement, transactional and commercial IP and internet-related issues, as well as matters concerning entertainment and media, dispute resolution, commercial law and regulatory law. The firm handles both contentious and non-contentious trademark, copyright, domain name and trade name matters for the Alibaba Group in over 80 jurisdictions, except for mainland China, including developing new brands and project names with business units, handling the entire trademark application process (from clearance search, filing, responding to official actions, to registration), and managing Alibaba’s trademark portfolio and a portfolio of contentious trademark matters. “We are delighted to be the winner of Hong Kong Trademark Firm of the Year at the Asia IP Awards,” said Alan Chiu. “This is an important recognition of the breadth and depth of our team’s capability and a true reflection of the volume and complexity of both inbound and outbound trademark work handled by us. We will continue to play an instrumental role in assisting our IP clients to navigate the uncharted waters ahead.”

India

India Copyright Firm of the Year

Managing partner Tia Malik leads the team at Lall & Sethi. The firm focuses on copyrights, designs, trademarks, patents, confidential information and trade secrets, entertainment and sports laws and information technology laws. The firm prides itself on having a top-notch IT system; its IP Management Software, developed in-house, ensures that timely responses are sent and deadlines are strictly adhered to. The firm was founded in 1994 by Chander Lall and Sandeep Sethi, both of whom have been elevated to senior advocates. Partners Raghav Malik, Anju Khanna and Jyotideep Kaur are key contacts. The firm was responsible for the anti-piracy operations in India of the Motion Picture Association (MPA), a consortium of the seven leading Hollywood studios. By using a combination of criminal, civil and administrative enforcement procedures, film piracy levels were brought down by several percentage points throughout India.

India Patents Firm of the Year

Anand and Anand is one of India’s top IP firms, housing more than 200 professionals led by managing partner Pravin Anand. Clients include Mars, Microsoft, Toyota, Louis Vuitton and Pioneer. Anand and Anand was also named the National IP Firm of the Year at the 2022 Asia IP India Awards. In its patent work, the firm caters to clients across industries, including pharmaceuticals, automotive, telecoms, energy, chemicals and others. The firm handles prosecution, contentious work, commercialization and work such as freedom to operate searches and validity searches.

India Trademarks Firm of the Year

IP powerhouse Remfry & Sagar, which opened its fourth office in Mumbai in April 2021,is a go-to firm for multinationals in India. The firm is advising the World Trade Centers Association in ongoing enforcement work in which damages to the tune of Rs5 million (US$75,000) have been claimed. In one matter, relating to use of the company’s trademarks and service marks, the firm traveled to a work site in Nashik, Maharashtra, with local police to remove signage when it was learned that the infringing company was flouting a High Court order to cease using the marks. The firm celebrates its 95th anniversary in 2022. “Our long innings gives us unrivalled knowledge of how ideas must be protected, and insights into how even the best idea can fall by the wayside if executed incorrectly,” says managing partner Ashwin Julka. “With experience on our side and creativity on yours, we aim to partner with and advise intellectual property owners worldwide. In so doing, we look to build on our heritage in new ways and remain at the forefront of guiding innovation in the 21st century.”

Indonesia

Indonesia Copyright Firm of the Year

Managing partner Justisiari Perdana Kusumah and partner Risti Wulansari as well as senior associate Siti Mariam Nabila lead K&K Advocates, a boutique firm specializing in IP matters with particular strength in copyright, patent and trademark registration and enforcement. The firm is regularly sought by multinational clients and foreign governments. It also acts for or is involved with bodies responsible for developing IP and technology laws. The firm assisted Telekomunikasi Indonesia (Telkom) in filing copyright applications for computer programs of the government’s Peduli Lindungi surveillance app, which traced and tracked suspected patients and confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Indonesia. It also advises PT Aplikasi Karya Anak Bangsa (GOJEK) in maintaining its IP portfolio, including actively monitoring the status of the client’s copyright registration and/or application, and actively filing new copyright applications, as well as handling advisory works for their copyright matters.

Indonesia Patents Firm of the Year

HHP Law Firm, formerly known as Hadiputranto, Hadinoto & Partners, is the Indonesian member firm of Baker McKenzie. Its IP team helps international clients with cease-and-desist campaigns, anti-counterfeiting raids, infringer investigations and other related matters. The IP team is led by partner Daru Lukiantono. “It is extremely gratifying to be selected as the leading Indonesia Patents Firm of the Year once again,” says Isabella Liu, the Asia Pacific chair of Baker McKenzie’s IP and technology practice. “The spread of the categories in which we won is a testament to the strength of our IP practice across the region. We look forward to continuing to supporting our clients in all their IP strategies and objectives across the Asia Pacific region.”

Indonesia Trademarks Firm of the Year

Led by Purnomo Suryomurcito, Nidya Kalangie and Andrew Conduit, SKC Law provides clients with strategic counseling and transactional advice, particularly on matters involving commercialization of IP, advertising, broadcasting, and the internet and consumer law. The firm can efficiently complete due diligence on IP assets particularly during merger transactions. Other types of transaction the firm advises on include franchising, licensing, technology transfer, R&D contracts, music and film productions, confidentiality agreements and model release. Clients appreciate Suryomurcito’s “straightforward and practical advice”; he still participates personally in criminal raids and enjoys travelling across Indonesia to protect his clients’ IP.

Japan

Japan Copyright Firm of the Year

Founded in 2003, Kotto Dori Law Office for the Arts is located in Tokyo’s fashionable Minami-Aoyama neighbourhood and is highly sought after for its work in art and entertainment law. The firm has represented clients in areas of publishing, audio-visual, stage drama, music and games. Its principal practice is divided between advice on domestic and international contracts, dispute resolution and copyright-related issues. Kensaku Fukui is extensively published on copyright matters; his publication An Introduction to Copyright for 18-Year-Olds has recently been reprinted for the seventh time. He was a member of the group which issued the Report on the Next Copyright Revision Act, which was approved and reported by the Copyright Subcommittee of the Agency for Cultural Affairs. Members of the firm are often sought for commentary on a wide range of arts-related matters; they have recently been quoted on unauthorized NFT sales, Twitter and moral rights, digital avatars of deceased historical figures, and the future of performing arts digital archives.

Japan Patents Firm of the Year

Yoshiyuki Inaba, Mitsuko Miyagawa and Toyotaka Abe are key practitioners at TMI Associates. Clients range from venture businesses to well-established high-tech companies. It also liaises with government agencies and has increasingly had opportunities to advise on policy. The firm is noted for its work in patent, utility model, design, trademark, trade secret, unfair competition, action plans and antitrust worth as well as licensing matters. The firm is acting on trademark matters for 20th Century Fox and the GSK Group. “TMI is honoured to be recognized by Asia IP. The award is testament to the wide reach of TMI’s IP practice both functionally and geographically,” says Yoshiyuki Inaba, the firm’s managing partner. “Clients can rely on TMI for skilful prosecution, reliable counselling and opinions, expert advice on transactional matters and litigation success in high profile, business-critical cases. TMI brings the entire resources of a large law firm to bear in providing this expansive range of services.”

Japan Trademarks Firm of the Year

Nakamura & Partners in Tokyo is an international patent and law firm which provides IP services inside and outside of the country. It provides services for patents (including designs) and trademarks, and has a strong legal section and excellent administration group to support the firm. Managing partner Daisuke Fujikura is a member of the firm’s trademarks section, as are key practitioners including partners Hiroyuki Itaki and Yuriko Sagara. “We are very honoured to be recognized by Asia IP,” says Akira Watanabe, an attorney at law and patent attorney at the firm. “We are most grateful for our clients for providing us with the opportunities to work with them. We will continue to strive to acquire and protect our clients’ rights and provide the highest quality of services possible.”

Laos

Laos IP Firm of the Year

Despite working in one of the smallest IP markets in Southeast Asia, lawyers at Tilleke & Gibbins in Laos provide a full range of legal advice and services in intellectual property and other areas of the law of interest to foreign investors. The firm also advises on distribution agreements, technology, data protection, franchising and dispute resolution. Dino Santaniello is head of the firm’s Vientiane practice; he has broad experience across many fields of law, including patents and trademarks, privacy and data protection, corporate establishment, licensing, and commercial transactions. He advises both domestic and international companies on legal matters in Laos and Thailand. Prior to joining Tilleke & Gibbins, he worked as an in-house counsel in the insurance and oil and gas industries. During this time, he advised on corporate and commercial issues, as well as intellectual property matters such as trade secrets and restrictive covenants.

Macau

Macau IP Firm of the Year

The team at BN Intellectual Property Services encompasses a wide range of services, in particular the registration and protection of trademarks, patents and domain names. The firm also provides legal support in the area of advertising and consumer law, and in the area of consumer law, it provides assistance in regard to food and beverages, consumption conflicts, and ecommerce. Managing partner Bruno Nunes, who handles IP, gaming and corporate and commercial work, is a key contact. The firm works closely with its sister firm, BN Lawyers.

Malaysia

Malaysia Copyright Firm of the Year

Formed in 2013 as a result of a merger among three Malaysian law firms, Christopher & Lee Ong is the Malaysia member of the Rajah & Tann Asia Network. Sri Sarguna Raj heads the firm’s IP, sports and gaming practice. The firm successfully represented Aberdeen Drilling School Limited & Aberdeen Drilling International (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd., who are a world leading oil and gas drilling training company, in securing a favourable resolution to a claim for copyright infringement, breach of confidential information and unlawful interference with trade action against the infringers. The plaintiffs have also secured an interlocutory injunction against the defendants pending trial of the matter in the High Court. The firm also represented the defendant, a biotechnology R&D company, and two of their scientists in an action brought by the plaintiff, a former research assistant of the defendant, in a claim for infringement of moral right. The defendants counterclaimed for unlawful interference with trade and abuse of process.

Malaysia Patents Firm of the Year

Full-service firm Shearn Delamore & Co’s IP practice is led by Karen Abraham, with its IP team providing professional services for more than 40 years and being widely recognized as one of the leading firms for patent filing, patent infringement and invalidation actions in Malaysia. The firm filed 561 applications from international clients and nine from domestic clients in 2021. The firm advised General Video on patent infringement proceedings in respect of various components used in MPEG-2 video and audio codecs in suits against a local distributor of a particular brand and range of mobile devices and the parent company, a tech conglomerate headquartered in Taiwan. It also advised Single Buoy Moorings in a patent infringement case involving cross-border entities against Samsung Heavy Industries and two other companies. Other key patent practitioners include Indran Shanmuganathan, Timothy Siaw, Jyeshta Mahendran, Janet Toh and Michelle C.Y. Loi.

Malaysia Trademarks Firm of the Year

IP and technology boutique Wong Jin Nee & Teo provides a wide-spectrum of IP and technology law services and is renowned for its work in trademark application, litigation, as well as brand protection and enforcement work. Partners Jin Nee Wong and Bong Kwang Teo are recognized for their expertise in handling both litigation and non-contentious matters that extend to integrated IP services including portfolio management and exploitation both locally and abroad.

Myanmar

Myanmar IP Firm of the Year

U Myint Lwin Law Office is one of the most reliable firms in the country, with founder Myint Lwin providing consistent, high-quality service. The firm, which was founded in 1994, works with domestic and international clients in obtaining and maintaining trademark registrations.

Nepal

Nepal IP Firm of the Year

Apex Law Chamber is recognized locally and internationally as one of Nepal’s leading intellectual property law offices; with more than 20 years of experience, it is an excellent choice for our inaugural Nepal IP Firm of the Year award. It is a full-service IP firm offering advice on all IP-related matters covering copyright, patent, trademarks, trade secrets, design, domain names, geographical indications, IP contracts and litigation, media and entertainment law, fashion law, sports law, information technology and ecommerce, internet and privacy laws, among others. R.C. Subedi is the founder and the principal contact for IP.

New Zealand

New Zealand Copyright Firm of the Year

Dentons and Kensington Swan in New Zealand have combined to form Dentons Kensington Swan. With new offices in Auckland and Wellington, Dentons can now connect clients to a team of more than 100 lawyers in New Zealand who can meet the needs of clients across a wide range of industries. The firm regularly advises businesses on IP matters in the entertainment sector, and works to protects clients’ copyrights including those in original artistic, literary, graphic, and musical works, as well as computer software. Kensington Swan had acted for Micro Mobility in defending its well-known trademark Micro and for the New Zealand Drag Racing Authority in a High Court proceeding regarding its event name. Partners Jenni Rutter, Charlotte Henley and Hayley Miller are key contacts.

New Zealand Patents Firm of the Year

New Zealand Trademarks Firm of the Year

AJ Park houses a leading IP practice for both contentious and non-contentious works. Principals Anton Blijlevens and Duncan de Geest are key practitioners on the patent side of the business, which is made up of two teams: chembio and engineering/IT. The firm handles litigation and prosecution work with equal deftness, and also provides searching, strategy and portfolio management matters. Principals Amanda Griffiths, Damon Butler and Penelope Catley are key practitioners on the trademark side. The firm registers marks in New Zealand, Australia and in the Pacific Islands; it also advises on geographical indications, the Madrid Protocol and litigation matters.

Pakistan

Pakistan Copyright Firm of the Year

Founded in February 1948 in Karachi by the late Sheikh Fazal Ellahi, Sheikh Brothers is an IP boutique providing services covering all aspects of IP including patents, trademarks, trade secrets, copyright, unfair competition, licensing, franchising, technology transfer, litigation and enforcement. Amongst two partners, four associates and 10 other staff members, Sultan Ahmad Sheikh and Salman Ahmed Sheikh stand out of the crowd and represent well with clients at all forums including the Supreme Court of Pakistan.

Pakistan Patents Firm of the Year

Founded in 1972, Ali & Associates is an internationally-recognized law firm specializing in IP, media and IT. The firm is led by senior partner Syed Auqil Ali Shah and managing partner Karimullah Adeni. The team is well-known for enforcement and litigation work, and has represented domestic and foreign clients in the cosmetic, chemical, textile, oil and gas, pharmaceutical, machinery, electronic, automobile and agriculture sectors. The firm has domestic offices in Karachi and Lahore, and foreign offices in Kabul and the Washington area.

Pakistan Trademarks Firm of the Year

Bharucha & Co. is a one-stop solution for IP and related matters and is one of the oldest firms in Pakistan in this profession; it caters to the needs of individuals to large domestic and international corporations predominantly from the U.S., Europe and Asia as well countries in the Middle East, often representing clients involved in business, trading, services, industry, etc., including a handful of clients who are Fortune 500 companies. The firm maintains its own extensive database of IP matters in Pakistan. Mohammad Fazil Bharucha is a key contact.

Philippines

Philippines Copyright Firm of the Year

Based in Manila, senior partner Bienvenido I. Somera Jr. and partner Katrina Doble and Sophia C. Cruz-Abrenica lead Villaraza & Angangco (V&A Law) in providing services of trademark and patent prosecution, copyright registration, IP commercialization, licensing, franchising, litigation as well as enforcement actions. V&A Law was engaged by Nissan Philippines Inc. to review and assess its various agreements with the music group Ingat Kayo for its use in connection with Nissan’s marketing campaign. The firm was initially tasked to make a simple review of the available agreements between the parties relating to their respective shares in the song’s royalties. After assessment of the existing agreements and documents vis-à-vis Nissan’s plans for the song’s use, however, the firm provided several exhaustive opinions which ultimately concluded that additional written agreements must be executed to fully protect the interests of both Nissan, as the user of the song and its derivative works, and of the copyright owners. V&A Law likewise provided advice regarding the possible legal consequences for proceeding without the appropriate licenses, as well as tax advice depending on their choice of agreement/s. 

Philippines Patents Firm of the Year

The Hechanova GroupHechanova & Co. and Hechanova Bugay Vilchez & Andaya-Racadio – is based in Manila, where the former firm focuses on prosecution matters and the latter on litigation work. With key IP practitioners including president Editha Hechanova and partner Maria Gladys Vilchez, the firm advices on matters related to trademarks, patents, copyright, domain names, utility models, designs, litigation, licensing and franchising. One of its foremost clients is Alibaba Group Holding Limited for which the firm filed 44 applications covering various technologies in a 12-month period in 2020. During the pandemic period the IPOPHL required that all patent applications be filed online, except applications that have more than 250 pages or the filing fee is P100,000 and over. Failure to file online resulted in the application being rejected. Hechanova firm experienced a reduction in patent filings by about 24 percent during the pandemic period which started in March 2020 and continued through 2021. Despite this, it remained as top filer for patents with 680 filings in 2021, according to IPOPHL records. The firm’s top three clients are Angel Group, Bytedance and Nokia. It continues to be engaged by state universities for drafting patent applications for inventions.

Philippines Trademarks Firm of the Year

Angara Abello Concepcion Regala & Cruz (ACCRALAW) is JHO Intellectual Property Holdings’ exclusive trademark agent in the Philippines. In 2021, the firm assisted JHO in 45 new matters involving the prosecution and maintenance of its Madrid trademark registrations in the Philippines. The firm filed more than 200 trademark applications for domestic companies and 660 for overseas companies in 2021. Senior partner Alex Ferdinand Fider, partners Victor N. De Leon, John Paul M. Gaba, Richmond K. Lee, Jose Eduardo T. Genilo and of counsel Aleli Angela G. Quirino and Rogelio Vinluan are top practitioners.

Singapore

Singapore Copyright Firm of the Year

Bird & Bird ATMD advised members of the Coalition Against Piracy (comprising of BBC, Discovery, FAPLL, La Liga and TVB) in applying to the Singapore High Court for “site blocking orders” to compel the internet service providers in Singapore to block access to websites which make available infringing copies of content belonging to these entities. It also successfully defended Fox Networks Group against a copyright infringement claim brought by a music-collecting society. It is among a handful of firms engaged to handle cases involving geographical indications– an emerging area given Singapore’s 2019 establishment of a registration system for GIs. “While perhaps not conjuring up an immediate impression as an IP right, geographical indications are in fact very much inter-woven with IP,” the firm said in a statement. “With Singapore’s registration framework for GIs in its infancy, our firm will be shaping the development of the law in this area with the matters we are currently engaged in.” The firm has assisted clients in opposing requests to register “Prosecco”, “Parmigiano Reggiano” and “Feta” as GIs.

Singapore Patents Firm of the Year

Allen & Gledhill is led by Senior Counsel Stanley Lai and has a team of more than 50, including 11 partners, one counsel and 12 associates. Partner and Singapore Registered Patent Attorney Pei Lin Low leads the patent prosecution and protection team. The firm manages Singapore and worldwide patent portfolios for MNCs, institutes of higher education and research institutes including the Agency for Science, Technology and Research; Nanyang Technological University; Huawei Technologies; Semiconductor Energy Laboratories; Meiji Co.; and Ericsson. It represented Fujikura Asia Limited in defense of a patent infringement action brought by Tai Tung Communication and Sing Tung Technologies. The case presented an opportunity for the Singapore Courts to clarify the application of, among other things, the concepts of novelty, inventive step and sufficiency under Singapore patent law. The action was discontinued by the plaintiffs.

Singapore Trademarks Firm of the Year

Drew & Napier is a full-service firm with expertise across the range of contentious and non-contentious IP work including litigation, trademarks and service marks, copyright and designs, licensing, distributorship, franchising and confidentiality agreements. Director of IP Tony Yeo is a key contact. The firm is a market leader in trademark filings in Singapore; it also has an established presence in Southeast Asia through its Drewmarks IP filing offices in Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam, and Myanmar. Over the past year, the value of the firm’ IP matters handled exceeded US$153 million. Trademark clients include Apple, Audi, Ferrari, Instagram, Lamborghini, Pfizer, Singapore Airlines, and Toyota. It is acting for Tata’s Natural Alchemy in defending a trademark opposition filed by Tata Sons against its application for cosmetic goods in Singapore.

South Korea

South Korea Copyright Firm of the Year

South Korea Trademarks Firm of the Year

Since 1961, Lee International IP & Law has been a leader in Korean IP with one of the largest and most active domestic practices, advising clients on protection and enforcement of copyrights in many different industries, including the computer software, video games and entertainment industries. It also advises on a wide range of IP disputes, including patent litigation, trademark litigation, anti-counterfeiting and infringement matters, domain name disputes, copyright disputes and trade secret enforcement. Managing partner Terry Taehong Kim, Jin-Hoe Kim and Yoon Suk Shin are top practitioners at the firm.

South Korea Patents Firm of the Year

Based in Seoul and headed by Jay Yang, Kim & Chang’s IP practice is the largest in the country, with more than 300 professionals, including IP litigators, patent attorneys, and foreign IP attorneys, as well as over 550 patent engineers, trademark paralegals, and support staff. The firm handles prosecution and all kinds of patent litigation, including patent actions at KIPO, infringement actions in the district courts, all levels of patent-related appeals (including Supreme Court cases), as well as agency IP-related enforcement (Korean ITC, Korean Customs, etc.). The firm prevailed in a significant patent court decision confirming that AstraZeneca’s patent on the active compound in Forxiga covered a prodrug of the compound under the doctrine of equivalents, even though the term “prodrug ester” was deleted from the patent claims during prosecution. The court’s decision substantially enhances the protection of innovative drug patents in South Korea. It also advised Dasco Co. in an administrative trial and patent court appeal relating to an invalidation action against a patent on a building slab constructional component. “We are honoured to have been selected as the South Korea Patents Firm of the Year by Asia IP,” says Jay Yang. “Kim & Chang’s IP group strives to provide the highest quality legal service in Korea, and to offer client-oriented solutions based on our deep legal knowledge and expertise.”

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka Copyright Firm of the Year

John Wilson Partners offers clients responsive, professional and fast turnaround for all types of IP filings. Managing proprietor John Wilson has invested considerable resources over the years to develop in-house custom docketing software, which facilitates efficient handling of large client portfolios, applications and renewals. Among its top IP practitioners are Sameendra Perera for trademark, patent and copyright; John Wilson for patent and copyright; and Benazir Hassan for trademark.

Sri Lanka Patents Firm of the Year

DL & F De Saram has filed many national phase entry applications under the Patent Corporation Treaty as well as the Paris Convention. The team has 11 partners and 40 lawyers, supported by a staff of 100 employees.

Sri Lanka Trademarks Firm of the Year

Century-old civil law firm Julius & Creasy offers advice on enforcement, management and transactional matters pertaining to IP law. The firm has acted for several Fortune 500 companies and has acted as Sri Lanka correspondent of several trademark and patent attorney firms in Europe, the U.S. and Asia. Key IP practitioners include J.M. Swaminathan and Anomi Wanigasekera. “As a leading intellectual property law firm in Sri Lanka, we are delighted that we have been selected as the best trademark law firm in Sri Lanka by Asia IP, and would like to take this opportunity to express our gratitude to Asia IP as well as our clients,” said Wanigasekera, a partner who heads the firm’s IP division.

Taiwan

Taiwan Copyright Firm of the Year

Chen & Lin is noted for its general business advice in Taiwan, including its top intellectual property practice, as well as providing advice in corporate, securities, finance and business litigation. The firm’s clients include a wide variety of clients including a world-class semiconductor foundry company, several multinational corporations and many major national and international players in high tech and information industry involved in patent, copyright, trademark and trade secret license or infringement, telecommunication, depositary receipt or convertible bond issuance, joint venture, mergers and acquisition, trade practices, syndicated loan arrangement and environment protection.

Taiwan Patents Firm of the Year

Taipei-based Tsai, Lee & Chen is particularly well-known for its work with high-tech patents. The firm has seen extensive growth in recent years, especially in its domestic patent department. The firm manages more than 30,000 patents and 18,000 trademarks worldwide; it filed more than 4,700 patent applications from domestic clients last year, and nearly 2,500 from international clients. On the litigation side, the team defended Gogoro, an innovative vehicle enterprise also renowned for building a battery swapping network partnering wirth other electric scooter brands. Stone Energy Technology, another company engaged in developing novel electrical power storage systems, accused Gogoro of infringing two Taiwan patents of inventions: “anti-counterfeiting battery pack and its authentication system thereof” and “battery pack.” Stone Energy claimed damages reached at least NT$350 million (US$12.55 million). After pending for less than 18 months, the IP Court rendered a decision in May 2021, rejecting all of the plaintiff’s. At the same time, the court did not find Stone Energy’s patent claims reading on Gogoro’s batteries; therefore, Stone Energy’s patents were not infringed. As the patents not infringed, the court did not further investigate or review the validity of patents, the damages claim, injunction requests, etc.

Taiwan Trademarks Firm of the Year

With headquarters in Taipei and branch offices in Hsinchu, Taichung and southern Taiwan, Lee and Li is a key player in Taiwan. The firm has formed an alliance with Leaven IPR Agency in Beijing to develop the mainland China market. The firm handles new trademark applications for registration, renewal application, change of applicant's/registrant's name or other application/registration particulars, assignment recordation, license or sublicense recordation, etc. In a trademark opposition administrative litigation, Apple, Inc. v. Ora, Inc., which involved Apple’s logo and Ora’s fruit device, the firm represented Apple Ora filed a trademark application for its fruit device in Taiwan, which was granted registration. Ora also filed the same trademark logo for trademark registration in other countries, including in the United States. As Apple considers the fruit device to be confusingly similar to Apple’s own apple device, Apple then filed an opposition against the fruit device trademark with Taiwan’s IP office. The IPO took the view that Ora’ fruit device is an orange, which was not similar to the apple device trademark, and then rejected Apple’s opposition. Apple then filed an administrative appeal with the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) but failed. The firm then represented Apple further, filing an administrative litigation with the Intellectual Property Court, which not only cancelled the decisions of the IPO and the MOEA, but also ordered the IPO to cancel Ora’s fruit device registration, held in its decision that Apple’s apple device should be deemed famous trademark in Taiwan. Apple may now be able to cite the IP Court’s opinion to have more protection against other trademark use in different fields under the Fair Trade Act.

Thailand

Thailand Copyright Firm of the Year

Tilleke & Gibbins is often called Thailand’s premier intellectual property practice. Darani Vachanavuttivong and Alan Adcock lead the practice; both are heavily involved in the media and entertainment sectors. The firm advised an American trade association in the film industry on website blocking regulations and procedures under Thai law to support its fight against the illegal distribution of films online. In an attempt to expedite the website blocking process, members of the association considered whether it would be more effective to reach out to ISPs directly instead of following standard legal procedures. The client’s in-house counsel reached out to the firm to identify potential risks and issue a legal opinion on the plan. The firm also advised Facebook on various copyright-related issues connected to a planned feature to be deployed on their social network. Thailand has one of Facebook’s most active user bases.

Thailand Patents Firm of the Year

Satyapon & Partners was founded by Satyapon Sachdecha in 1995 and practices IP law exclusively. Sachdecha is a skilled lawyer who was president of the Intellectual Property Association of Thailand from 2009 to 2019 and is a lecturer of IP law at both Dhurakij Pundit University and Thammasat University. Other key members are Kritchawat Chainapasak who is the head of the patent and design practice and Kritsana Mingtongkhum who is the head of the trademark and litigation practice.

Thailand Trademarks Firm of the Year

Based in Bangkok with a liaison office in Hong Kong, Ananda Intellectual Property is a well-recognized patent and trademark firm managed by European, Thai and American partners. Clients say that managing partner Franck Fougere is affable and easy to work with; he brings more than 20 years of experience in Asia and Europe to the table. One of Thailand’s leading IP specialists, he is noted for his work in trademark and patent prosecution, trademark strategy, anti-counterfeit strategy, IP contracts and litigation. The firm’s clients include local and international companies in various fields of industry including in automotive, pharmaceutical and biotechnology, information technologies and software, cosmetics, consumer goods and fashion.

Vietnam

Vietnam Copyright Firm of the Year

Schmitt & Orlov operates in Greater China, Russia and CIS countries, and Southeast Asia including Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam, where its office is located in Ho Chi Minh City. It specializes in patents, copyright and trademark prosecution, enforcement, media and entertainment and personality rights including data privacy and protection. Yen Pham, who has extensive IP prosecution and contentious matter experience, has joined the firm as a senior IP attorney. Meanwhile, Ho Chi Minh-based Hau Nguyen has been promoted to the role of deputy director for Southeast Asia where she work with Daniel Greif, the firm’s director for Southeast Asia. S&O is known for providing good enforcement strategies to the client, organizing and participating in trainings, and raising awareness of local authorities on international standards in IPR protection. The firm assisted Formula One Licensing against a series of infringing trademark applications of F1 stores by negotiation for amicable solutions, which eventually resulted in opposing the marks. S&O also assisted the client in filing non-use cancellation against the conflict marks incorporating the Formula 1 element based on non-use evidence of the conflict marks. “Our Vietnam team at S&O IP is delighted to be recognized as the Asia IP Vietnam winner for copyright,” says Dan Greif, the firm’s Southeast Asia director of IP and senior trademark attorney. “Our Vietnam practice is growing rapidly, and we thank our clients for their support and the opportunity to represent them on copyrights, trademarks and other IP matters. Our clients appreciate the high-level tailored IP advice, coupled with speed and flexibility, that we provide.

Vietnam Patents Firm of the Year

The IP group at Vision & Associates handles all aspects of IP including filings and prosecutions for patents, trademarks, copyright, designs and Internet domain names; availability searches; licensing and franchising; assignments and renewals; technology transfer; franchising and distribution; as well as enforcement. The firm boasts more than 90 lawyers, patent and trademark attorneys and consultants, including partners Pham Nghiem Xuan Bac and Do Quang Hung, both of whom are excellent IP lawyers. It acted for Unilever in an infringement investigation against a local company, resulting in a seizure and destruction of over 5,000 infringing products. Other notable clients include HP, P&G and Coca-Cola. The firm’s IP practice also covers Laos and Cambodia.

Vietnam Trademarks Firm of the Year

Pham & Associates provides one of the best all-round IP services in the country from offices in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang and Hai Phong. The firm is a prolific filer of trademark applications (as well as patent and industrial design applications), and acts on appeals and oppositions before the National Office of Intellectual Property and on infringement court actions. Partners Pham Vu Khanh Toan and Nguyen Xuan Thu advised Number Three Inc, a Japanese toiletries manufacturer, during its appeal against a refusal to register a mark. They also advised REINS International, Japan’s largest yakiniku restaurant chain, on overcoming a refusal to register a mark. 

Asia Pacific

Asia Pacific Copyright Firm of the Year

Through the 2015 merger between Dentons and Dacheng Law Offices, the global law firm has the best coverage in mainland China of any of its peers: more than 45 offices in the PRC, plus another in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. The firm also has Asia Pacific offices in Baku, Muscat, Port Moresby, Auckland, Wellington, Yangon, Ulaanbaatar, Kuala Lumpur, Nur-Sultan, Almaty, Amman, Jakarta, Doha, Jeddah, Riyadh, Singapore, Seoul, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Tashkent and in five cities across Australia.

Asia Pacific Patents Firm of the Year

After establishing its footprint in Asia-Pacific nearly 20 years ago, international commercial firm Bird & Bird’s Asia network comprises offices located in Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Singapore, Sydney, Dubai and Abu Dhabi with a team of over 140 lawyers and legal professionals. It also has teams advising on matters throughout ASEAN, Japan, South Korea and India.

Asia Pacific Trademarks Firm of the Year

Baker McKenzie serves Asia through its offices in Australia, China, Jakarta, Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Singapore, Seoul, Taipei, Bangkok, Yangon, Almaty, Doha, Jeddah, Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Vietnam. The firm boasts the largest IP brand management practice in the world, overseeing some of the world’s biggest portfolios for more than 200 multinational companies.


Law firms

Hong Kong