China and SARs: Hong Kong SIPS

SIPS is a dynamic, market-leading IP consultancy servicing the needs of multinationals and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Greater China. The firm has offices in Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai.

Our partners are top-rated practitioners known for their expertise in IP-related matters in Greater China. All SIPS advisers are fluent in Mandarin and have an intimate knowledge of the commercial, legal, cultural and political context in the region. The firm has over 55 professional and support staff.

SIPS helps clients in managing their IP portfolios, including registration, enforcement and licensing of trademarks, copyrights and patents. We also assist with investigations management, advice on supply chain integrity, trade secret protection, data privacy, retail and wholesale distribution, e-commerce, distribution and sourcing agreements, and regulatory matters relating to information technology and other high-tech sectors.

Our clients include household brands across a broad range of industries, including information technology and consumer electronics, food and beverages, fashion, media and entertainment. We also assist SMEs in protecting their intellectual property through both the sourcing and distribution of their products in China.

In 2017 we expanded our capabilities by opening a fully licensed trademark agency in China, SIPS (Shanghai) Ltd. This enables us to represent our clients directly before the Chinese authorities. The new agency operates from offices in Beijing and Shanghai.

For our Asia-based clients, we also provide support on regional and global IP matters, including trademark prosecution and enforcement.

Trademarks

Our trademark portfolio management practice includes clearance of new trademarks, filing of new applications, policing of registry pirates and acquisition of trademarks through negotiated purchases. We also assist clients in developing new brands, particularly Chinese language equivalents for foreign marks.

Enforcement

We advise clients on all aspects of IP enforcement, including trademark, copyright, patent and trade secret enforcement.

In particular, we help clients to establish online enforcement programmes that are strategically focused and integrated with bricks-and-mortar enforcement work.

Our enforcement team includes specially trained fraud investigators who are experts in analysing online data, enabling us to identify infringers and their networks before private investigators are engaged. This results in significant efficiencies.

We also assist clients in training local IP staff and providing audits and advice on the efficiency of their enforcement programmes.

IP contracts and information technology

We actively support companies – particularly in the IT, entertainment and toy industries – with licensing, distribution and related regulatory matters in China. This includes the drafting and localisation of IP licences and assistance in negotiating agreements with local partners.

We also assist in monitoring compliance with licensing agreements and advising on related disputes.

Policy work

We actively monitor and report on the latest developments in Chinese IP law in a range of publications. Our directors are considered to be thought leaders in the Chinese IP world, and routinely work with leading industry associations to develop position papers and research programmes on key issues. More recently, these have included concerns over bad-faith trademark registrations and online counterfeiting.

Our team uses its know-how and government contacts to assist individual clients in dealing with difficult issues that arise in China. We also assist in organising and coordinating the work of ad hoc coalitions of brand owners that share common concerns in enforcement or legal reform.

Geographic coverage

We operate offices in Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai. Our team members travel regularly throughout China to deal directly with disputes and negotiations.

China is geographically and culturally large and complex. We therefore work with a carefully selected network of external service providers – including investigators and law firms – to offer more tailored and cost-effective solutions.

Contact details

SIPS
25/F
3 Lockhart Road
Wanchai
Hong Kong

E: mail@sips.asia
T: +852 3468 7500
F: +852 2866 6408
W: www.sips.asia

Professional contacts

Dan Plane, Director
E: danplane@sips.asia

Joseph Simone, Director
E: joesimone@sips.asia

Helen Tang, Director
E: helentang@sips.asia

Other offices

Beijing, Shanghai

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Issue 73