Sweden

Sweden has a lengthy tradition of promoting innovation and supporting entrepreneurship; as a result, the country regularly ranks highly in global innovation indices and is one of the top filers at the EPO. The government plays a key role in sponsoring local talent – for example, innovation agency Vinnova promotes and funds research projects across a wide range of fields. Lately, the pharmaceutical and automotive industries have been hotbeds of activity, especially as biosimilar products and digitalised offerings start to enter the market. Practitioners also report an uptick in software patenting, as high-tech companies increasingly avail of the patenting systems available to them. On the contentious front, the country’s specialised IP courts celebrate their fifth anniversary this year, and lawyers have nothing but praise for their efficiency and quick turnaround times. Overall, activity looks healthy and Sweden remains a favourable jurisdiction for those seeking to protect and enforce their assets.

Firms: litigation

Firms: prosecution

  • Highly recommended
  • AWA 
  • Kransell & Wennborg AB
  • Ström & Gulliksson AB
  • Valea AB 
  • Zacco 
  • Recommended
  • BRANN AB 
  • Groth & Co
  • Hynell Intellectual Property AB
  • Noréns Patentbyrå AB

Firms: transactions

  • Mannheimer Swartling
  • Roschier, Attorneys Ltd
  • Setterwalls Advokatbyrå AB
  • Synch Advokat AB
  • Vinge 
  • Westerberg & Partners Advokatbyrå Ab

Advokatbyrån Gulliksson

Gulliksson is “a top-notch firm for patent litigation”: “The level of service is excellent, as are its legal knowledge and business understanding. Replies are speedy, accurate and focused, and its lawyers take an informal approach, which makes the group easy to work with.” The main draws for pharmaceutical, life sciences and technology companies include Mattias Malmstedt, Magnus Dahlman and Jens Olsson. Malmstedt earns plaudits for his creative capabilities, critical analyses of both the technical and legal aspects of a case, and speedy response times: “He is vital to successful outcomes.” He recently represented Bosch Siemens in proceedings against Electrolux and, along with Dahlman, prevailed for Sandoz in a litigation concerning three patent families. “Outstanding litigator and skilled advocate” Dahlman has both the law and the technology on lock: “He is efficient, responsive and really understands his clients’ business.” Managing partner Olsson is an ambidextrous lawyer who contributes significantly to Gulliksson’s wins in contentious and transactional settings.

AWA 

“An excellent firm with gifted practitioners”, AWA is scarcely rivalled when it comes to technical versatility, strength in depth and geographical reach. It operates in every corner of the world and recently set up shop in Norway, further cementing its Scandinavian presence and bringing its total office count to 19. In the high-tech, electrical and mechanical disciplines, you would be hard pressed to find better counsel than Sören Giver, Julia Mannesson, Charlotta Vink, Urban Lind, Mattias Pierrou and Joacim Lydén. Courtesy of his broad IP skillset, Giver assists major domestic and international corporations in many meaningful ways, from freedom-to-operate analyses to oppositions and appeals. He also plays a crucial role in furthering the progress of AWA’s future leaders, serving as an in-house European Qualifying Examination coach and lecturer. Cut from the same cloth, the “extremely well-organised and service-minded” Mannesson is “quick to help out and cater to her clients’ needs”. Capitalising on over 20 years of experience, Vink wows with her commercial eye, technical acumen and attention to detail; while versatile operator Lind covers a lot of ground for telecommunications companies. “Seasoned and appreciated prosecutor” Pierrou is “a fantastic choice for software patents”; he has recently been helping leading Chinese technology corporation BOE Technology to protect its inventions in Europe by filing and maintaining over 100 European patent applications. IAM Patent 1000 debutant Lydén has a keen sense of the broader picture and thinks long term, working alongside inventors to develop solid protection plans and then executing on them flawlessly. Turning to the life science, Mikael HenrikssonNiklas Mattsson and Inga-Lill Andersson make up a dynamic trio. Medical biochemistry PhD and SPC guru Henriksson knows all the right moves in opposition proceedings before the Swedish Patent and Registration Office (PRV) and the EPO. An authority on biotechnology matters, Mattson is regularly sought out as a technical expert and has appeared in US patent litigation proceedings to share his ample knowledge of European patent law. Chemical engineer Andersson provides percipient guidance on R&D agreements, having held a post as an analytical chemist in AstraZeneca’s R&D division. AWA is a significant player on the contentious side too, with Peter Kenamets and Fredrik Lüning anchoring the litigation division. “Thorough and hardworking advocate” Kenamets “brings insightful views to every case”; while Lüning delivers arguments with clarity and conviction. The pair are currently assisting high-tech company IRnova in multi-faceted proceedings against US-based FLIR Systems.

BRANN AB 

Specialised IP firm BRANN is resolute in its mission to provide far-sighted, cost-efficient, value-added services. It is home to a 50-strong diverse team of European and Swedish patent and trademark attorneys, lawyers and other IP administrators, which renders a holistic service to innovative patrons. Biotechnology and pharmaceuticals are a forte, courtesy of Annika Kilander, who takes a meticulous and commercial approach to prosecution and transactions instructions, having spent over a decade as a leader in the IP department of GE Healthcare’s life sciences division.

Groth & Co

Sweden’s longest-serving IP outfit, Groth & Co was founded in 1869 and has historically advised inventors and corporations at the cutting edge of their respective fields – including, in its infancy, the likes of Alfred Nobel and Thomas Edison. And that trend continues today: for example, managing partner Mathias Loqvist is assisting Swedish MedTech company Elekta – a pioneering manufacturer of equipment and software used to prolong and save the lives of cancer patients – with all its IP matters and astutely handles its immense patent portfolio. Meanwhile, in the burgeoning area of 5G and telecommunications, Nabil Sebaa takes the lead: “He has a great eye for technical detail and drafts strong applications with broad scopes of protection. Nabil also produces top-quality reports on office actions and comes up with great replies too.” One of Groth & Co’s strengths is that many of its attorneys have held in-house positions. Sebaa previously worked at Ericsson, while Tommy Vikholm and Dag Stålhandske were positioned at AkzoNobel and Electrolux respectively. Chemical engineer Vikholm has profound opposition and licensing know-how; while engineering physicist Stålhandske has great strategic vision and conducts thorough landscape analyses.

Hynell Intellectual Property AB

A prosecution boutique with “highly skilled and tremendously experienced practitioners”, Hynell Intellectual Property sets itself apart through its creative approach and the collective insight of its senior attorneys. The set is a fine choice for EPO instructions – especially as most of the group have previously worked as EPO examiners and have also held prominent industry roles. Two such stalwarts are Peter Kylin and Barry Franks. SMEs in need of business-oriented strategies have an ally in mechanical engineer Kylin, who used to be a patent manager at Aker Solutions. Resident oppositions expert Franks “always does what he promises, meets deadlines and delivers work to the highest standard. He is customer-focused, super-friendly and a pleasure to collaborate with”.

Kransell & Wennborg AB

“Without a doubt, Kransell & Wennbord [K&W] is one of the best patent prosecution firms in Sweden. If you want to spend less time explaining and more time doing, then K&W is the firm for you.” The popular outfit receives praise from all corners of the market, with both peers and clients quick to extol leading lights Anders Wirén and Johan Wennborg. “Anders is an extraordinary practitioner with exceptional drafting skills; he is great at understanding the invention and spotting the key patentable features. His first drafts are so good they could even be the final application.” “He delivers clear and constructive advice in litigation support, and his insight in negotiating and structuring commercial collaborations is super-valuable.” He recently handled opposition proceedings for BillerudKorsnäs alongside Wennborg. “Hands down the country’s best attorney”, Wennborg is “super-talented. He has excellent analytical skills, thorough knowledge of many technological fields and a great ability to grasp and explain all the crucial details”. His adroit navigation of prior art, precision drafting, creativity, linguistic talents and background as an EPO examiner all give him an edge. Other stars in the K&W firmament include Daniel Fritsche, Magnus Nilsson, Roland Mezöfi, Martin Holmberg-Schwindt, Oscar Sewerin and Karin Hillsten – a testament to its bench strength. “Daniel really understands the needs of clients and the importance of practical advice. He is energetic, creative, ready to take initiative and always delivers to a high standard.” Lately, he and Nilsson have been assisting Mölnlycke Health Care and successfully maintained one of its most crucial patents in the area of negative-pressure wound therapy. Nilsson has deep engineering knowledge in electronics, software and mechanics, and in the interactions between the three: “He quickly understands the core ideas behind an invention, narrows them down to logical claims and puts them in writing. He is friendly, approachable and a great teacher too.” With extensive experience prosecuting applications in Europe and the United States, electrical engineer Mezöfi earns plaudits for his “dedication, excellent skills and ability to put himself in clients’ shoes. Roland is customer oriented, technically savvy and a fantastic listener”. Chemical and mechanical engineers Holmberg-Schwindt and Sewerin bring further technical versatility to the table. “Martin is forthcoming, and honest; he is easy to talk to and is always willing to explain complex technical concepts to people outside of the patenting world. He projects calmness, replies promptly and goes above and beyond.” “Open-minded and an excellent communicator”, Sewerin is “really talented at what he does and keeps on top of every single matter”. IAM Patent 1000 newcomer Hillsten also garners praise: “She is strategically sharp and an excellent drafter, and is great to work with”. As the former IP manager at a prominent healthcare company, she amplifies the crew’s life sciences and pharmaceutical expertise.

Mannheimer Swartling

Premier commercial outfit Mannheimer Swartling has bases all over Sweden and boots on the ground in China, Belgium, Russia, Singapore and the United States, making it a persuasive option for cross-border IP and technology transactions work. As an example, the side recently helped Scandinavian Enviro Systems to complete a direct share issue to Michelin as part of a long-term strategic partnership between the two. Instrumental to the deal was Oscar Björkman Possne, who is unfazed by the pressure of high-value disputes and transactions. An eloquent advocate, he also regularly represents major pharmaceutical players in pan-European litigation.

Noréns Patentbyrå AB

“Noréns is outstanding at understanding and describing complicated technical solutions, such as artificial intelligence, algorithms and advanced software; and has the skills to structure those claims into successful applications. You can fully trust Noréns to take care of every step in the patenting process and have the confidence it will deliver.” At the heart of the practice are European patent attorneys Johan Örtenblad, Anders Bratt and Helene Strandin. “Absolutely top class”, Örtenblad is “extremely knowledgeable and possibly one of the brightest agents in the country. He sees key points quickly, explains complex technologies to lawyers really well and is always available to answer questions”. In the life sciences, Bratt is a transactional ace who is “really skilled at evaluating patents; he understands the business behind patent portfolios and has the commercial perspective that corporate counsel love”. Joining them in the guide this year is resident mechanical engineering guru Strandin: she is “lovely to collaborate with, thanks to her simplified and clear explanations of complex inventions”.

Roschier, Attorneys Ltd

Roschier’s dynamic Swedish IP team works harmoniously with its Finnish counterparts to provide a joined-up Nordic service that stays true to its phenomenal reputation. In litigation, it is well equipped to tackle commercially consequential disputes, as evidenced by its recent representation of Autoliv against Volvo in the Supreme Court – a case that marks the first time the jurisdiction of the country’s specialised IP courts has been challenged. It also tackles high-value deals on the regular, having just acted for Volkswagen in Northvolt’s $1 billion capital raise. A key player in both matters, Erik Ficks delivers “convincing and winning arguments. His sharp mind, precise approach and ability to discuss technical concepts and quickly get to the critical points are most impressive”.

Sandart & Partners Advokatbyrå KB 

“Distinguished and highly renowned”, Sandart & Partners is a prime pick for complex patent litigation. “Its lawyers work with in-house counsel and each other exceptionally well”; and when it comes to quality, client service and proactivity, “they are definitely in the top tier”. The side absolutely dominates in cutting-edge pharmaceutical disputes, where Peter Sande and Dag Sandart are the marquee names. “If there is even a sniff of a dispute in the air, your first choice should be Peter,” insists one market commentator. “He is undoubtedly the best patent litigator in Sweden, with the ability to recognise the most important details in complicated disputes. He may be softly spoken, but he is razor sharp; you definitely want him on your side in the courtroom.” “Dag is a major competitor who can answer the toughest patent questions in contractual and contentious matters with ease.” He comes in for additional praise alongside Julia Ericsson: “They are both super-dynamic and have an impressive ability to understand the technical data and general information, despite the complex nature of the cases they handle. They have an excellent work ethic and their legal opinions are outstanding.” Ericsson’s pharmaceutical, medical technology and software clients also benefit from her extensive regulatory know-how. Another dyed-in-the-wool litigator, Anders Kylhammar has a vibrant and versatile contentious practice, which means that he solves legal problems holistically and handles multi-faceted disputes with flair. Rounding off the troop is Karin Westerberg, a tenacious advocate whose “diligence, excellent care for details and flexibility exceed all expectations”.

Setterwalls Advokatbyrå AB

When it comes to representing generic pharmaceutical companies in patent litigation, Setterwalls “is among the very best and always does a spectacular job.” It regularly goes out to bat for some of the world’s leading entities – in one recent highlight, it acted for Sandoz in multi-jurisdictional infringement and revocation proceedings against Eli Lilly, with Martin Levinsohn bringing home a favourable first instance decision. The work of “extremely skilled litigator” Levinsohn is “always very thorough. His advice considers the business goals of his clients and the industries in which they operate”; he also stands out for his “quick replies, personable nature and great collaboration with expert witnesses”. Levinsohn also linked up with Per Lidman to assist Fresenius Kabi in a cross-border dispute; although the Swedish proceedings were initiated later than several of their European counterparts, the pair came up with creative and novel arguments to shore up the pharmaceutical giant’s position. The dedicated and passionate Lidman has additionally been lighting up the life sciences space by brokering major R&D and licensing deals.

Ström & Gulliksson AB

The “super-successful” Ström & Gulliksson is “a modern and dynamic boutique full of wonderful talent”. Its artful management of massive portfolios containing thousands of patent families has earned it a sterling reputation among A-listers such as IKEA, Rolls-Royce, ARJO and Atos Medical. The all-star line-up in Malmo includes Rikard Roos, Björn Andersson and Magnus Berglund. “Dedicated, clever and an excellent communicator”, Roos “explains complex technical matters in layman’s terms, which makes life super-easy for litigators. He is a brilliant strategist with a great business understanding”, which translates into persuasive arguments in inter partes cases and oral proceedings. “He has a winning attitude and is the attorney you definitely want on your side of the table.” Electronics and Internet of Things whizz Andersson also receives glowing praise: “When it comes to litigation, Björn is psychic – he is absolutely brilliant, focuses on all the right questions and issues, and ends up giving the opposing party a run for their money. He combines extreme brilliance with a commercial approach, and gives clear and understandable advice.” IAM Patent 1000 newcomer Berglund heads up the chemistry squad and is counsel of choice for start-ups and SMEs looking to make their mark in Sweden, thanks to his insightful early stage opinion work. Over in Stockholm, Christian Arkelius is “one of the most trustworthy European patent attorneys around. He has a deep understanding of European and Chinese patent practices, and is always eager to learn about the latest legal developments. He is a true team player and his diligent approach is vital to clearing business obstacles”. Heading up the firm’s Gothenburg operations is Peter Ekwall, a go-to for complex assignments who “can be counted on for fresh perspectives and solutions”.

Synch Advokat AB

“Innovative and unique”, Synch has adapted its offering to accommodate the evolving needs of Sweden’s high-tech sectors and is the first firm in the Nordics to introduce its very own sandbox to support early-stage legal tech start-ups and entrepreneurs. It is a favourite among software companies and has recently been advising Albacross on the potential protections available for its one-of-a-kind algorithm – a brief on which Mathilda Nordmark played an integral role. The department head also maintains a sophisticated litigation practice, where her intuitive understanding of complex technical matters and the essence of patent infringement arguments yields business-oriented solutions; trademark and brand management expertise is a further string to her bow. Holding down the fort in transactions are Sara Sparring and Johan Tydén. Sparring is a proven performer in the life sciences: she has lately been assisting Immedica Pharma with a range of commercial contracts and provided strategic advice to Region Västerbotten in relation to its business models for new advanced therapies. Tydén is “one of the most respected and experienced lawyers in the telecommunications industry”, as the former head of legal services at Ericsson; with a career that has spanned the journey from 2G to 5G, he is intimately familiar with the tech.

Valea AB 

Valea’s patent attorneys have mastered all patentable technical areas and have everything covered, from filing and prior art searches to due diligence work, oppositions and litigation support. CEO Andrew Hammond has played a major role in driving the firm’s success and is a widely respected member of the IP community. “Exceptionally skilled at oppositions and oral proceedings”, he recently represented Primozone Production before the PRV along with Anette Romare, who “consistently shows high personal engagement and truly fights to defend her clients. She is technically brilliant and creatively identifies new patentable subject matter as well as good lines of argumentation in proceedings. Anette has a pragmatic approach and delivers high-quality work quickly and cost effectively”. In the mechanical field, Thomas Ernby, Linda Egeröd Sidot and Marcus Gentzel play the adviser role to perfection. Ernby’s passion for innovation takes him right to the heart of the automotive and energy industries. Egeröd Sidot thrives in total strategic support roles; in one recent highlight, she successfully represented Swedish Match North Europe in opposition proceedings. “Great at understanding complex inventions”, Gentzel is “attentive to details, finds solutions in tricky situations and gives excellent advice”. Recently moving over from Groth & Co to head up Valea’s life-tech and chemistry team, Malin Boström builds commercially valuable portfolios within the life sciences.

Vinge 

Full-service Vinge is one of the most prominent players on the Swedish legal market and houses “an exceptionally strong patent litigation team. You know for a fact that if its lawyers are on the other side of a case, you will be in for a ride”. Its client base is equally striking and the set regularly acts for industry leaders in high-profile cases and lucrative transactions.  “The country’s number one litigator”, Håkan Borgenhäll is “meticulous, detail oriented and manages an impressively large caseload. He has a wealth of legal knowledge and a lovely collaborative approach, even with opposing counsel”. This year he is joined by Malin Malm Waerme, a rising star with extensive life sciences experience: “She is super-dedicated, great fun to work with and gracefully handles complex pharmaceutical cases.” On the transactions front, the “brilliant” Stojan Arnerstål also makes his debut. No stranger to high-rolling deals, he recently advised Main Capital and Alfa eCare on their strategic acquisition of Joliv.

Westerberg & Partners Advokatbyrå Ab

“Top-class” litigation and IP boutique Westerberg & Partners is “full of talented lawyers who are simply excellent at what they do”. Although it only opened its doors two years ago, the firm has quickly cemented its position among the patent elite; its esteemed practitioners have been working together for the better part of a decade and routinely act on landscape-shifting mandates. Robust leadership is supplied in abundance by Jonas Westerberg, “a stand-out litigator with profound legal knowledge”. Quick-witted and immensely skilled, he has been acting for genetic sequencing company Illumina along with Ludvig Holm, who “produces great work and gives solid, clear and practical advice” at every turn. The pair have already asserted two patents against three different entities – BGI Hong Kong, MGI Latvia and MGI International Sales – and are geared up for a month-long trial this year. Multi-jurisdictional disputes are a forte for Björn Rundblom Andersson. He has superb coordination skills and a keen eye for litigation strategy, which he deployed for Electrolux in infringement proceedings brought by BSH Hausgeräte, a home appliance company seeking pan-European relief from the local courts for the alleged infringement of 10 national designations of a European patent. The case is believed to be a Swedish first and raises questions on the availability of such relief in Sweden. A further testament to the trio’s prowess is their latest victory for Finansiell ID-Teknik BID, the country’s main e-identification service, in a trade secrets action which resulted in the award of approximately £1 million in litigation costs and the bankruptcy of the opponent. Westerberg clients can also mine a rich seam of licensing and R&D expertise courtesy of Jonas Löfgren and Ia Modin. Löfgren pairs his encyclopaedic knowledge of regulatory law with a resolutely commercial outlook to draft contracts that transform the sectors in which his patrons operate. Lately, he supported Karo Pharma in acquiring the Rx Pevaryl branded products portfolio of Johnson & Johnson group company Janssen. “When a matter concerns Swedish law and goes beyond standard patent legislation, I turn with confidence to Ia,” enthuses one peer. “She stays calm, takes in all the facts and provides excellent opinions.” She is assisting Tiki Safety, an innovative company developing personal protection equipment, with the growth of its business and exploitation of its patent rights on an international level.

Zacco 

Zacco’s USP is its uniquely personal touch: “Its attorneys are genuinely interested in clients’ inventions and make them feel confident in their knowledge and dedication from the outset.” With a 500-strong team operating out of 32 offices in six countries, the group is ideally placed to manage large-scale portfolios and prosecute applications globally. As a reflection of its diverse talent and strength in depth, eight of its practitioners in Sweden feature in the IAM Patent 1000 this year: Jörgen Linde, Michael Byström, Sofia Larsson, Paul Winblad, Ulf Juhlin-Dannfelt, Tommy Somlo, Hampus Rystedt and Martin Tranälv. Former DNA analysis research engineer and oppositions ace Linde holds down the chemistry and life sciences division together with Byström, “one of the best European attorneys for multi-jurisdictional filing and coordination”, who was recently made director of international business. Medical device whizz Larsson is “detail oriented, fantastic with technology and very skilled in the mechanical and electrical areas”. “Quality and speed” characterise the service of former PRV examiner Winblad: “He is easy to collaborate with and flexible in his approach.” For meticulous applications in the mechanics and automotive sectors, Juhlin-Dannfelt has it locked down. Also in mechanics, Somlo is another former examiner who knows the optimum route through to grant – something he shares with life sciences maestro Rystedt. “Hampus is super-knowledgeable, awesome to work with and one of the best attorneys in Sweden.” Those in search of holistic protection need look no further than Tranälv, a dual-qualified attorney who navigates complex technologies with consummate ease.

Other recommended experts

A go-to for trade secret litigation, Kristian Fredrikson “gets to grips with essential technical issues quickly and gives clear, constructive recommendations. He is super-service minded and always finds a way to get things done in the quickest, most cost-effective way. To top it off, he’s a lovely person too”. Fredrikson takes instructions at Delphi. Recently departing Zacco to set up Megra IPR, Linda Melin Granberg does a terrific job diving into diverse technologies and presents compelling arguments in oral proceedings before the EPO. Over at MAQS Law Firm, Wendela Hårdemark is “an excellent litigator with a deep understanding of the law” who can “pick up complicated technical concepts quickly. She has a lot of integrity and makes sure that things get done to the highest standard”. Baker McKenzie’s Peder Oxhammar is “a fantastic choice for litigation, with great industry experience. He is highly skilled, asks all the right questions and is great to work with”. At Cirio, Christopher Tehrani receives glowing praise: “Chris is a devoted lawyer and big-picture thinker who is always one step ahead. He has great knowledge of international patent regulations, understands tricky legal and technical issues, and considers how the characteristics of certain industries might impact on his litigation strategies.” Heading up the patent division at Bergenstråhle & Partners, Annika Unge is a favourite among the university and start-up community for her innovative approach, practical strategies and facility for developing and strengthening portfolios.

Individuals: litigation

Individuals: prosecution

Individuals: transactions

  • Stojan Arnerstål - Vinge 
  • Oscar Björkman Possne - Mannheimer Swartling
  • Erik Ficks - Roschier, Attorneys Ltd
  • Kristian Fredrikson - Advokatfirman Delphi
  • Per Lidman - Setterwalls Advokatbyrå AB
  • Jonas Löfgren - Westerberg & Partners Advokatbyrå Ab
  • Ia Modin - Westerberg & Partners Advokatbyrå Ab
  • Peder Oxhammar - Baker McKenzie
  • Dag Sandart - Sandart & Partners Advokatbyrå KB 
  • Sara Sparring - Synch Advokat AB
  • Johan Tydén - Synch Advokat AB