Poland

Poland is becoming an increasingly significant market for international companies looking for opportunities to expand; its service industry is developing rapidly and consumer spending power in the country is also on the rise. The government has established various stimulation programmes designed to create an environment which is conducive to the formation and growth of start-ups. In turn, this has helped push intellectual property up the economic agenda. The introduction of a trademark opposition system in 2016 was a major development for brand owners and their representatives in Poland and has markedly coloured IP and law firm activities in 2017. While foreign companies pursue EU-wide protection, local businesses are filing domestically in growing numbers, taking advantage of quick turnaround on registrations provided by the patent office. As a result, bread-and-butter prosecution work has seen a slight but noticeable uptick. Connecting Eastern and Western Europe, Poland is a transit hub for goods originating in Asia, and therefore a strategically crucial jurisdiction in the fight against fakes. Anti-counterfeiting is thus an important service for a Polish law or IP firm to cover and the market does not let brand owners down in this regard.

Firms

1
Baker McKenzie Krzyzowski i Wspólnicy Spólka Komandytowa
Sołtysiński Kawecki & Szlęzak
Wardyński & Partners
2
Bird & Bird Szepietowski i wspólnicy spk
CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
JWP Patent & Trademark Attorneys
Kulikowska & Kulikowski spj
LDS Lazewski Depo & Partners
Traple Konarski Podrecki & Partners
3
Dentons
DLA Piper Wiater spk
Drzewiecki Tomaszek & Partners
Hasik Rheims & Partners
Hogan Lovells (Warszawa) LLP
KONDRAT & Partners
Wolf Theiss
Baker McKenzie Krzyzowski i Wspólnicy Spólka Komandytowa
“Baker McKenzie is exceptional among general practices in Poland, as it has a strong trademark portfolio management and prosecution practice.” It offers a unique, round-the-clock protection service, made possible by its offshore centres in Manila and Belfast, and its “powerful network”. The side is also hailed as “an obvious leader in IP litigation”. Clients and colleagues are guided by the first-class leadership of Marek Rosinski and Marcin Fijalkowski. Rosinski plays a central role in the firm as a member of its Europe, Middle East and Africa IP steering committee. Profoundly committed to innovation, he maintains a rigorous technology and life sciences practice and also serves up commercially meaningful insight on trademark law to clients such as 3M. Of late he and Fijalkowski have been working wonders for the global manufacturing conglomerate and gaining more and more responsibility as a result; in 2017, they were instructed to manage the coordination of the company’s global trademark renewal process, having earlier been tasked with administering its portfolio in Western Europe, which includes over 4,000 records. Fijalkowski is “adored by brand owners” from all corners of the marker and is known to be “a smart, articulate lawyer who is very easy to work with”. “The first and last point of contact” for many rights holders, “he is an experienced professional with very wide and detailed knowledge, and a rare ability to give fast and accurate recommendations”. Making her debut in the WTR 1000 this year, Katarzyna Tobiasz-Dumania is also emphatically endorsed. She has been producing stellar results for top vodka producer CEDC International, setting a Supreme Administrative Court precedent in the course of protecting one of the company’s best-selling brands – Zubrowka.
Bird & Bird Szepietowski i wspólnicy spk
Global reach as well as “in-depth knowledge of intellectual property and pragmatic advice and solutions” attract a plethora of domestic and international clients to Bird & Bird’s burgeoning IP practice in Warsaw. In hot demand, the group has increased its headcount from nine to 15 professionals in just 12 months to ensure that clients are never left wanting for resources. In a move that further underscores this growth, the firm has constructed a dedicated brand management practice, headed by Marta Koremba. Her strategically sound stewardship of sprawling portfolios and her dazzling litigation skills ensure she is ranked in the WTR 1000 for the first time this year. Swiss Pharma International has been keeping her busy, charging her with overseeing protection for over 2,000 trademarks – including extensive opposition work – and entrusting her with important infringement litigations in several European jurisdictions. Koremba co-heads the set’s Polish IP practice with “reliable and experienced lawyer” Piotr Dynowski, a patent ace who is equally comfortable getting to grips with thorny trademark matters. Both garner plaudits from clients for their “straight to the point advice” and proactivity.
CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
The chief claim to fame for the IP unit at CMS Warsaw is its cutting-edge enforcement expertise. Swift and decisive, Tomasz Koryzma and his fellow fighters know all the pressure points in the pursuit of fakers and make excellent use of the firm’s international network to secure results. Koryzma is hailed as a thought leader on parallel imports and this forms a considerable portion of his practice. For example, he has been acting on behalf of Mobis Parts Europe – the exclusive parts producer for Korean automotive marques Kia and Hyundai – against a major regional wholesaler of grey market parts; as well as identifying and executing a tight overall strategy, he assisted Mobis with test purchases and raids and came out the other side with the injunction he had been pursuing. L’Oréal lean heavily on Koryzma, benefiting from the anti-counterfeiting maven’s excellent relationship with Polish Customs and police authorities. Under his watch, “CMS is alert to all client needs, and provides clear and to-the-point advice”. “It is committed to making matters easy for the client to understand, and keeps you well informed along the way while keeping fees reasonable. The team works in perfect harmony – there’s obviously a very good atmosphere there, which makes a great impression.”
Dentons
Dentons is a big name which had a big year in 2017; the global leviathan opened new international offices – including one in Amsterdam – and further extended its reach and influence in Latin America and Asia. Its Polish offering underwent major transformation, too; the ribbon was cut on a new shared services centre in Warsaw, which will be crucial when it comes to driving international legal service efficiencies. On the trademark side, the local team has had plenty of work to get stuck into; showcasing a deft touch with non-traditional marks, the team advised S’ip by S’well on a strategy for the European protection of its new 3D bottle shape; it has also been defending Gazprom’s rights, opposing a national application for a mark by a local enterprise as well as handling Customs seizures and other infringement matters for Nike. Counsel Marek Trojnarski has been leading the line on all of these fronts. “He has all the hallmarks of a future star and is a skilful strategist who focuses on delivering value to clients.”
DLA Piper Wiater spk
DLA Piper’s Warsaw office is home to a dedicated IP and technology group, led by Ewa Kurowska-Tober. “Knowledgeable and reliable in intellectual property and litigation”, the team dispenses sage guidance encompassing branding and a variety of fields relating to trademarks, including regulatory law and data protection. The local team plays a vital role coordinating IP programmes in Central and Eastern Europe and, as it is closely integrated into the firm’s wider international network, can devise and execute global solutions. The IP team at redoubtable business law outfit Domański Zakrzewski Palinka undertakes its fair share of transactional support work, but has the resources and expertise to stand confidently on its own two feet. “The firm has invested wisely and built up a considerable IP practice.” Getting to know its clients’ business objectives, as well as relevant trends and developments in the sector, has been a key ingredient in DZP’s success. Alongside retail, food and beverages and media, financial services is a particularly happy hunting ground for the IP team, which undertakes a range of transactional, advisory and contentious projects for Visa Europe Services. In a recent case, head of intellectual property Aleksandra Auleytner anchored opposition proceedings for Visa against the registration of PLUS BANK trademarks by phone network operator Polkomtel. Auleytner’s skill set is extremely expansive; she is well placed to advise on pure trademark matters, including infringement, but also handles infrastructure projects and drafts and negotiates technology agreements with verve.
Drzewiecki Tomaszek & Partners
Drzewiecki Tomaszek & Partners supports an illustrious group of clients in all their trademark endeavours. Its approach to prosecution and portfolio management is meticulous, while its litigation and enforcement style is robust and commercially astute. Managing partner Andrzej Tomaszek has been busy of late, advising Red Bull on prosecution and enforcement matters and handling invalidation and opposition proceedings for InPost and the International Olympic Committee, respectively.
Hasik Rheims & Partners
Hasik Rheims & Partners is a young firm which is going from strength to strength in Poland. The dynamic boutique has lately made some smart moves, for example bringing on board enforcement ace Eric Rheims and his team. Rheims is highly sought after by clients within the pharmaceutical sector and is the exclusive Polish IP counsel to Merck Sharp & Dohme, Eli Lilly & Company and Pfizer. He hit the news in 2016 when he shut down one of the world’s largest counterfeit medicines factory, and rode that wave of success to further notable victories throughout 2017. Rheims, who has concentrations of loyal patrons in numerous sectors – including electronics and apparel – is noted for his “excellent success rate in extracting damages from infringers”. He joins forces with founding partner Daniel Hasik, a civil IP litigator who proves consistently persuasive in the most challenging cases – in addition to being a perspicacious portfolio manager and counsellor. “Daniel stands out for his provision of prompt, business-minded advice, rather than academic interpretations of trademark law.”
Hogan Lovells (Warszawa) LLP
Hogan Lovells is the destination of choice for many household brands, thanks to its efficiency in coordinating international trademark protection efforts. Intellectual property is an important area of focus for its large Warsaw-based practice, which is made up of more than 70 lawyers and includes eminent specialists Ewa Kacperek and Aleksandra Kuc-Makulska. Kacperek, who captains the IP, media and technology cohort, is an agile, pragmatic lawyer with a host of Supreme Court appearances on her résumé; she knows how to both protect and enforce trademarks, particularly in the digital realm. At her side is senior associate Kuc-Makulska, who makes regular appearances before the Polish Patent Office and administrative courts. Both lawyers think commercially and monetise IP assets with a deft touch.
JWP Patent & Trademark Attorneys
JWP enjoyed a banner year in 2017, toasting its 25th anniversary and celebrating myriad professional successes. Offering a comprehensive suite of prosecution and enforcement services, the firm is “a safe pair of hands” and “one you can have complete trust in”. “Highly knowledgeable and responsive, it provides dynamic business-focused counsel and outstanding guidance in difficult situations.” The many international clients on its books appreciate that its “advice is provided quickly and in perfect English”. Four domestic offices – in Gdansk, Krakow, Warsaw and Wroclaw – put it within easy reach of local businesses, one of which is of the opinion that “JWP has the most professional attitude among all patent and trademark boutiques in Poland”. Managing the organisation since 2007, Dorota Rzążewska keeps the trademark engine purring and under her watch the team has consistently been one of the top representative filers of EU trademarks from Poland. An experienced infringement litigator, she dazzles with her strategic thinking, efficiency and attention to detail, and as a result “all disputes against her are a big challenge”. Fellow advocate Agnieszka Rolbiecka is admired for her “creative solutions” to trademark infringement conundrums.
KONDRAT & Partners
KONDRAT & Partners strengthens legal protection for a wide range of goods, services and businesses, and offers a tailor-made approach to meet the needs of clients for whom intellectual property is a vital part of their business, including brand owners and life sciences companies. An expert on IP protection within the pharmaceutical sector, “experienced and reliable adviser” Mariusz Kondrat astutely steers the firm so that its diverse team is always looking in the same direction as its clients. Legal counsel Justyna Stefańczyk-Kaczmarzyk blends expertise in copyright, trademark, unfair competition and advertising law to great effect. Like her senior colleague, she also has an impressive understanding of pharmaceutical IP law.
Kulikowska & Kulikowski spj
“Kulikowska & Kulikowski has a rich tradition in the trademark field and is one of the best firms in Poland. It manages significant trademark portfolios for international corporations.” Leading an “efficient and experienced team equipped with deep substantive knowledge, creative instincts and a perfect understanding of the market’s realities”, Jaroslaw Kulikowski has a panoramic perspective when it comes to brands. The managing partner is a staunch representative in prosecution, a whizz when it comes to geographical indications and an exceptional advocate in contentious administrative proceedings. Those in need of specialist litigation help should call up Monika Chimiak; she is ready to tackle just about any mandate, given her mix of trademark and patent expertise and her knowledge of civil and criminal enforcement routes. Fellow advocate Monika Witkowska joins Chimiak in the WTR 1000 rankings for the first time this year. “She is passionate about her work and always up to date on important changes in IP law in Poland.”
LDS Lazewski Depo & Partners
The practitioners at LDS Lazewski Depo & Partners love nothing more than sinking their teeth into meaty IP disputes. Their presentations resonate in court and before administrative bodies, but they also possess a talent for facilitating early wins and keeping costs low. Practice leader Marek Lazewski draws on an encyclopaedic understanding of attack plans to overcome challenging litigation obstacles with clever and creative manoeuvring. “He is very quick and likes to be hands on. He clearly understands his clients’ business objectives and considers the commercial implications of his legal advice. Compared to the high quality he and his team offer, the prices charged are surprising in a positive way.” Another seasoned litigator, Justyna Rasiewicz “fights like a lion, but always proposes solutions that are best from a business point of view”. Whereas Lazewski and Rasiewicz are mainly involved in the patent practice, Michal Siciarek’s sights are firmly trained on trademarks and brands; like his colleagues, he is comfortable litigating cases with a high degree of complexity. Collectively, the LDS gang “have a panoramic view of intellectual property and demonstrate strategic thinking taking into account the past, present and future”. A mainstay of the Polish market, PATPOL deploys a sizeable squad of high-calibre trademark attorneys and runs one of the largest prosecution practices in the country. The firm enjoys the patronage of an “outstanding portfolio of clients”, testament to the firm’s efficiency and the quality of protection it obtains. Pulling the strings behind the scenes is experienced Polish and European trademark attorney Izabella Dudek-Urbanowicz. Succeeding her as head of the trademark and design department, Aleksandra Kryśka earned her stripes at PATPOL and knows how to get the best out of the firm’s considerable resources to satisfy her clients. “It was a smart move putting her in charge. She is a very skilled operator and highly experienced in trademark portfolio management.” She puts administrative trademark disputes to bed quickly, giving brand owners peace of mind and relieving budgetary concerns.

POLSERVICE continues to be a trademark filing and prosecution powerhouse – over the past decade it has developed its legal team and as a result has evolved into one of the apex trademark litigation and enforcement players on the market. “Bartosz Krakowiak is, without question, the go-to person in Poland for anti-counterfeiting matters. He has a fantastic network of contacts among law enforcement authorities, knows the procedures in and out, and is cost-effective and results-oriented.” Krakowiak coordinates the legal group and acts as deputy manager of the trademark department. In addition, he is a prominent thought leader within the International Trademark Association – he previously chaired the organisation’s anti-counterfeiting committee – and the Polish national group for the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property. Alongside Krakowiak, Anna Stopińska-Ślefarska has been in charge of the trademark set for a remarkable 25 years; she readily identifies solutions to routine and unusual problems. When it comes to registration tasks, “the POLSERVICE team is incredibly efficient, and an excellent partner for the region”. As one client avers: “We appreciate how quickly and easily we can reach POLSERVICE attorneys, and how well they communicate advice and expectations for success.”

Sołtysiński Kawecki & Szlęzak
“Sołtysiński Kawecki & Szlęzak is phenomenal in IP litigation – probably the best in Poland.” “It identifies innovative solutions and is a firm to seek out if a matter is particularly complex or out of the ordinary.” Much of the side’s appeal rests on the distinctly commercial approach it takes to intellectual property; while the advice it dispenses is certainly rigorous from a theoretical perspective, it is unequivocally aligned to business aims and, crucially, delivered in language that is concise and easy to understand. Leadership of the group is shared between tremendous professionals Szymon Gogulski and Ewa Skrzydło-Tefelska, who both earn a spot in the WTR 1000 gold tier for litigation and enforcement. A “skilful strategist”, Gogulski has “huge trademark knowledge and experience” and is “always open to discussions” and “extremely easy to cooperate with”. An “outstanding academic”, but first and foremost a “superb practitioner”, Skrzydło-Tefelska is also the recipient of effusive praise. “She’s very creative, and provides good advice and reliable support.”
Traple Konarski Podrecki & Partners
“Traple Konarski Podrecki is one of the most important and respected IP firms in Poland.” It has “excellent, dynamic specialists” with “strong academic backgrounds”, who are “constantly developing their IP knowledge”. First among them is Paweł Podrecki, a lawyer who supports his clients’ business development in many different ways. Principally noted as an IP and competition law supremo, he also knows a thing or two about consumer protection, advertising, sales and promotion law. When it comes to litigation, “he finds arguments which others do not see because they’re not exposed to or don’t keep up with the case law of other countries”. “When you’re his opponent, you can always learn something from him, and he’s a really good communicator.” Fellow senior partner and doyenne of Polish IP law, Elżbieta Traple is “one of the top lawyers on the market”. The erudite practitioner has helped to shape Poland’s IP legal framework and sets a superb example for both colleagues and peers outside the company.
Wardyński & Partners
Celebrated by major corporations and well-known brand owners for its combination of commercial law expertise and outstanding IP credentials, Wardyński & Partners moves up to the gold tier in the WTR 1000 for 2018. The firm runs a tight ship on the prosecution and filing side, but is best known for its redoubtable performances in trademark infringement litigation. Top-flight advocate Anna Pompe leads the IP practice and focuses on trademark, design and unfair competition law. “She has deep experience not only in civil litigation but also in criminal cases. She is very professional and doesn’t let emotions cloud her judgement in the courtroom – she fights with arguments.” She collaborates closely with Włodzimierz Szoszuk, a “technically gifted, and excellent commercial thinker”. “He has an encyclopaedic knowledge of Polish law, is very experienced and knows exactly what he is doing.” Local professionals and foreign associates consider him “a safe pair of hands”, and a “first choice” for any complex litigation or advisory requests. The dynamic duo go the extra mile, which means they dig deep to get the desired result and do not short change clients along the way. These devoted practitioners are more than just legal advisers – they are partners when it comes to making strategically crucial business decisions.
Wolf Theiss
With an IP team comprising over 30 lawyers stationed in 13 offices, “Wolf Theiss has a comprehensive IP offering across Central and Eastern Europe and an impressive breadth of experience and knowledge in the region.” Mapping out international IP strategies and litigating patent, trademark and copyright conflicts is meat and drink for the group, but it also know what it takes to sew up propitious IP-driven M&A and licensing transactions. Senior associate Marcin Rudnik is a crucial cog in a “knowledgeable, responsive, thorough and thoughtful group which is willing to make itself available at any time of day or night”.

Individuals: enforcement

Marcin Fijalkowski - Baker McKenzie Krzyzowski i Wspólnicy Spólka Komandytowa
Szymon Gogulski - Sołtysiński Kawecki & Szlęzak
Tomasz Koryzma - CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
Marek Lazewski - LDS Lazewski Depo & Partners
Ewa Skrzydło-Tefelska - Sołtysiński Kawecki & Szlęzak
Włodzimierz Szoszuk - Wardyński & Partners
Piotr Dynowski - Bird & Bird Szepietowski i wspólnicy spk
Anna Gołębiowska - GKR Legal
Daniel Hasik - Hasik Rheims & Partners
Ewa Kacperek - Hogan Lovells (Warszawa) LLP
Bartosz Krakowiak - POLSERVICE Patent and Trademark Attorneys Office
Jaroslaw Kulikowski - Kulikowska & Kulikowski spj
Paweł Podrecki - Traple Konarski Podrecki & Partners
Anna Pompe - Wardyński & Partners
Justyna Rasiewicz - LDS Lazewski Depo & Partners
Eric Rheims - Hasik Rheims & Partners
Dorota Rzążewska - JWP Patent & Trademark Attorneys
Krystyna Szczepanowska-Kozłowska - Allen & Overy A Pędzich Spk
Oskar Tulodziecki - K&L Gates Jamka SpK
Aleksandra Auleytner - Domański Zakrzewski Palinka
Aleksandra Kuc-Makulska - Hogan Lovells (Warszawa) LLP
Agnieszka Rolbiecka - JWP Patent & Trademark Attorneys
Justyna Stefańczyk-Kaczmarzyk - KONDRAT & Partners
Katarzyna Tobiasz-Dumania - Baker McKenzie Krzyzowski i Wspólnicy Spólka Komandytowa
Marek Trojnarski - Dentons
Monika Witkowska - Kulikowska & Kulikowski spj

Individuals: anti-counterfeiting

Tomasz Koryzma - CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
Bartosz Krakowiak - POLSERVICE Patent and Trademark Attorneys Office
Eric Rheims - Hasik Rheims & Partners
Michal Siciarek - LDS Lazewski Depo & Partners
Włodzimierz Szoszuk - Wardyński & Partners
Oskar Tulodziecki - K&L Gates Jamka SpK

Luminaries

Ryszard Skubisz - Ryszard Skubisz IP Law Office
Elżbieta Traple - Traple Konarski Podrecki & Partners

Individuals: prosecution

Aleksandra Auleytner - Domański Zakrzewski Palinka
Monika Chimiak - Kulikowska & Kulikowski spj
Izabella Dudek-Urbanowicz - PATPOL – European and Polish Patent and Trademark Attorneys
Piotr Dynowski - Bird & Bird Szepietowski i wspólnicy spk
Marcin Fijalkowski - Baker McKenzie Krzyzowski i Wspólnicy Spólka Komandytowa
Szymon Gogulski - Sołtysiński Kawecki & Szlęzak
Mariusz Kondrat - KONDRAT & Partners
Marta Koremba - Bird & Bird Szepietowski i wspólnicy spk
Bartosz Krakowiak - POLSERVICE Patent and Trademark Attorneys Office
Aleksandra Kryśka - PATPOL – European and Polish Patent and Trademark Attorneys
Aleksandra Kuc-Makulska - Hogan Lovells (Warszawa) LLP
Marek Lazewski - LDS Lazewski Depo & Partners
Marek Rosinski - Baker McKenzie Krzyzowski i Wspólnicy Spólka Komandytowa
Dorota Rzążewska - JWP Patent & Trademark Attorneys
Anna Stopińska-Ślefarska - POLSERVICE Patent and Trademark Attorneys Office
Katarzyna Tobiasz-Dumania - Baker McKenzie Krzyzowski i Wspólnicy Spólka Komandytowa
Anna Zakrocka - Karcz Zakrocka Patent & Trade Mark Attorneys
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Issue 71