United Arab Emirates

Patent work has traditionally been limited in the United Arab Emirates – the number of patent cases in the last decade has stayed in the single digits and even then, decisions are not published, making it a tough jurisdiction to navigate. However, the government has taken plenty of initiative in promoting innovation and considerable investments are being made in R&D. On top of this, the patent office is committed to improving its filing and prosecution processes, resulting in a slow but steady enhancement of its examination capabilities. As such, patent applications and protection have increased significantly in recent years. Though the UAE patent market is still nascent, it presents abundant opportunities and is very much worth keeping a close eye on. The jurisdiction features in the IAM Patent 1000 for the first time this year.

Firms

H
Al Tamimi & Company – Advocates and Legal Consultants
Cedar White Bradley
Clyde & Co LLP
Rouse & Co International
Al Tamimi & Company – Advocates and Legal Consultants
A powerhouse of the regional IP scene, Al Tamimi is home to a host of skilled patent attorneys and professionals. Its robust patents and designs team offers a wide range of services to an assortment of clients, from international industry leaders to home-grown start-ups; life sciences players feature particularly prominently on its roster. The firm cooperates closely with the largest universities to foster local innovation; it has a nuanced understanding of the specific needs of research institutions and frequently advises on public policies and studies. High-technology expert Ahmad Saleh has a hawkish eye for quality and captains the squad with poise.
Cedar White Bradley
Cedar White Bradley’s name is synonymous with tailored IP consultation services throughout the Middle East and North Africa. Established in Dubai over a decade ago, it has traditionally focused on trademarks; however, the firm has ably kept pace with the fast-growing patent market and offers adroit patent prosecution and counselling services across a breadth of technical industries. An office network spanning from Saudia Arabia to Lebanon provides the necessary firepower to attract a sizeable share of the region’s patent work. Head honcho David Harper is a magnet for praise: “He and his team have the local and technical understanding and know exactly what they are doing. They are also responsive, and if you need something done they are very accommodating to those needs.”
Clyde & Co LLP
With bases in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, and a slew of specialists across the Middle East, Clyde & Co is a font of regional IP knowledge, with refined technical expertise in the areas of chemistry, biochemistry, molecular biology and aeronautical engineering. Making light work of all patent mandates, from filings to enforcement, the firm is especially proficient at the commercialisation of IP assets. This is the metier of the “immensely knowledgeable” Joycia Young; “committed to supporting the client, she is prompt, accurate and really helpful”. Young makes a formidable duo with fellow partner Rob Deans, an equally shrewd practitioner who oversees the IP department and its contentious activities. An influential figure in the field, Deans excels at cross-border IP litigation.
Rouse & Co International
Rouse has the chops to dispatch any IP instruction thrown at it; it boasts strong patent practices throughout Asia and its Dubai branch houses a rigorous IP department that covers all of the Middle East, as well as parts of Africa. Its sophisticated technical and lingustic capabilities make it an able running mate for domestic patent owners of all stripes, and it also enjoys a steady stream of inbound work from European and Australian clients seeking to gain a foothold in the region. “Safe pair of hands” Sara Holder supervises the patents and technology team with aplomb, while simultaneously devising high-level strategy for key clients.

Individuals

Rob Deans - Clyde & Co LLP
David Harper - Cedar White Bradley
Sara Holder - Rouse & Co International
Ahmad Saleh - Al Tamimi & Company – Advocates and Legal Consultants
Joycia Young - Clyde & Co LLP
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Issue 86