Thailand

Competition between well-established market players and dynamic new outfits, the appointment of numerous new examiners at the patent office and a promising economic outlook all make for a healthy IP scene in Thailand. A large slice of the work crossing Thai practitioners’ desks continues to come from international rights holders expanding and fortifying their regional portfolios. However, domestic players are ramping up their patenting activity, both at home and abroad.

Firms

1
Baker McKenzie
Domnern Somgiat & Boonma Law Office Ltd
Tilleke & Gibbins
2
Chavalit & Associates Ltd
Rouse & Co International Thailand Ltd
S&I International Bangkok Office
Satyapon & Partners Ltd
3
Ananda Intellectual Property
LawPlus Ltd
Spruson & Ferguson
ZICO Law
Ananda Intellectual Property
Ananda Intellectual Property has made excellent progress since entering the market in 2011 and debuts in the IAM Patent 1000 this year. With a particular focus on the pharmaceutical and automotive fields, its 12 fee earners have forged close ties with firms in Japan and India, and handle an impressive volume of Patent Cooperation Treaty patents. On the contentious side, two full-time litigators make Ananda an efficient one-stop shop for rights holders. An extensive background in European law is a valuable string to firm co-founder Franck Fougere’s bow; he is an adviser to both the European Union and the French government on IP issues, and has practised in Thailand for 15 years.
Baker McKenzie
From individual entrepreneurs and small businesses to state enterprises and multinationals, global heavyweight Baker McKenzie provides clients of all stripes with fully integrated patent services. The Thai branch effortlessly handles inbound and outbound work in major overseas jurisdictions, including the United States, Japan, Europe and China. The team shines brightest on electrical and mechanical engineering instructions, but Baker McKenzie's streamlined global resource-sharing system means that no technical area is out of bounds. The venerable outfit is helmed by Say Sujintaya, whose astute portfolio management is sought after by leading pharmaceutical, software and consumer goods companies. The regional chair of the firm’s IP steering committee, Sujintaya also plays an active role in industry lobbying and is a regular speaker on IP issues.
Chavalit & Associates Ltd
Intellectual property takes centre stage at Chavalit & Associates, one of eight firms that make up SCL Law Group. Steeped in technical expertise, the side makes light work of domestic and international applications and consistently delivers on-point strategic advice. Rights holders are also backed to the hilt in contentious proceedings, with infringements and multifaceted enforcement campaigns navigated with acuity. The firm’s internal systems have been revamped to accommodate the set’s rapid growth, which owes much to the efforts of Kallayarat Chinsrivonkul. Co-founder of the SCL Law Group, Chinsrivonkul brings over a quarter of a century of experience to the operation; her boundless knowledge of international patent prosecution procedures is much vaunted. Chavalit Uttasart has a profound understanding of the legal regime in neighbouring Myanmar and brings a deft commercial touch to tricky transactions.
Domnern Somgiat & Boonma Law Office Ltd
Domnern has long been a prime pick for transnational operators seeking to protect and exploit their innovations in Thailand; the storied firm currently handles around half of all patent applications filed by foreign companies in the country. Its 135-strong squad works seamlessly with a network of external consultants proficient in myriad technical fields to turn out top-class patent applications. Steadfast ties to associate firms in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar also facilitate the effortless filing of patents across the region. Life sciences prosecution is Prabjote Busdee’s forte; she stands out for her non-contentious nous alongside licensing ace Chakrapat Mongkolsit, who has notched up over 30 years’ service at the firm. Enforcement instructions are adroitly dispatched by litigation champ Rutorn Nopakun.
LawPlus Ltd
The compact but potent IP line-up at LawPlus continues to make waves in the Thai market and enters the IAM Patent 1000 listings for the first time this year. Its much-lauded prowess in the automotive sector is now rivalled by a burgeoning reputation among chemical and engineering clients, which are attracted to the set for its swift, high-quality and cost-efficient services. Kowit Somwaiya wears the captain’s armband: “His in-depth knowledge of the domestic IP landscape has always proved to be a winning shot as far as transactions are concerned. His experience in other fields of law also allows him to see the bigger picture and plan the next step accordingly – he is one of the best in the market.”
Rouse & Co International Thailand Ltd
A global IP consultancy with a dominant presence throughout Southeast Asia, Rouse has the capacity to assist across all stages of the patent lifecycle. The dynamic Thai team, replete with technical experts who never lose sight of commercial goals, yields sparkling results for international clients seeking first-rate guidance in the region. Fabrice Mattei is the firm’s country manager for both Thailand and Myanmar: the hotshot litigator has resolutely represented rights holders before the Central Intellectual Property and International Trade Court (CIPITC) and the Supreme Court, and is a prolific author in the IP field.
S&I International Bangkok Office
S&I International drafts watertight applications and dispenses perspicacious strategic counsel to a slew of inbound and local filers. The boutique’s deep Japanese roots and widespread links throughout the continent make it a sound selection for companies hoping to gain a firm foothold in Asia. Precision drafts are produced under Yingluck Krairiksh’s watchful eye; he also plays a central role in organising enforcement strategies.
Satyapon & Partners Ltd
Brilliant boutique Satyapon & Partners regularly ranks among Thailand’s top filers; comprehensive coverage of all major industry fields is provided by 16 attorneys, supported by an impressive phalanx of technical experts. In-house English and Japanese translation services are an invaluable asset and the well-rounded group also takes up arms in defence of clients before the CIPITC. Managing partner Satyapon Sachdecha has seen it all in his three decades in the IP game; his venerable standing within the IP community is highlighted by his position as the president of the Intellectual Property Association of Thailand.
Spruson & Ferguson
With 350 staff servicing 25 countries, Spruson & Ferguson is an Asia-Pacific titan which, having taken over the IP functions of Siam Premier International Law Office in 2016, now also runs a redoubtable Thai operation. Clients flock to the expanding team for cross-border patent prosecution excellence matched by in-depth knowledge of the local market. Overseeing the newly opened Bangkok office is Daniel Greif, an all-round IP maven with hands-on patent litigation and licensing experience.
Tilleke & Gibbins
A prominent player on the Thai market in terms of both size and quality, the IP team at commercial law firm Tilleke & Gibbins delivers “timely responses and reporting in all instances” and “exhibits the utmost professionalism” across the entire spectrum of patent briefs. The architects of innovative enforcement strategies, Nandana Indananda and Srila Thongklang keep the set one step ahead in the contentious sphere. Indananda is a former CIPITC judge who draws upon his expert e-commerce, IT and biotechnology law know-how to formulate bulletproof courtroom arguments; while pharmaceutical market leaders loyally trust Thongklang’s cogent counsel in complex disputes. Fluent Mandarin speaker Alan Adcock is also a life sciences authority; although he is best known for his astute commercial insight on transactional and regulatory matters, his broad practice also encompasses litigation strategy. On the prosecution side, flawless cooperation between six regional offices ensures a consistently top-class service across the region, which is a major attraction for Tilleke’s largely international client base. Managing director of intellectual property Darani Vachanavuttivong safeguards clients’ rights from the get-go through meticulous drafting and sage strategic guidance.
ZICO Law
Part of a sweeping regional network of multi-disciplinary law firms, ZICO deals deftly with all patent instructions from its Bangkok base. “The quality of work, attention to detail, strong client relationships and reasonable prices make it an outstanding option for intellectual property in Thailand.” The firm’s diverse team of practitioners advises a vast array of rights holders; it recently assisted Thai Beverage Recycle Co with both prosecution and transactional matters and also guided PTT Global Chemical Public Company through IP issues arising from its inaugural open innovation challenge. Titirat Wattanachewanopakorn is a key contact for interested parties.

Individuals

Alan Adcock - Tilleke & Gibbins
Prabjote Busdee - Domnern Somgiat & Boonma Law Office Ltd
Kallayarat Chinsrivonkul - Chavalit & Associates Ltd
Franck Fougere - Ananda Intellectual Property
Daniel Q Greif - Spruson & Ferguson
Nandana Indananda - Tilleke & Gibbins
Yingluck Krairiksh - S&I International Bangkok Office
Poondej Krairit - Dej-Udom & Associates
Fabrice Mattei - Rouse & Co International Thailand Ltd
Chakrapat Mongkolsit - Domnern Somgiat & Boonma Law Office Ltd
Rutorn Nopakun - Domnern Somgiat & Boonma Law Office Ltd
Satyapon Sachdecha - Satyapon & Partners Ltd
Kowit Somwaiya - LawPlus Ltd
Say Sujintaya - Baker McKenzie
Srila Thongklang - Tilleke & Gibbins
Chavalit Uttasart - Chavalit & Associates Ltd
Darani Vachanavuttivong - Tilleke & Gibbins
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Issue 85