IP awareness has dramatically increased in Turkey of late. Since 1995, IP law has been largely in line with EU directives, and changes due to take effect in 2012 will further streamline the existing legislation (including allowing more online access). There has also been a jump in the volume of trademark applications. The country does have specialised IP courts, but they handle a huge amount of work and so can be slow; preliminary injunctions are thus a quicker and more efficient means of tackling counterfeiting. Customs officers are proactive in searching for counterfeits, according to sources. The marketplace is dominated by a handful of firms, including a number of family establishments.
Previously at ELIG, Serkan Ictem recently set up his own firm, IctemLegal, specialising in IP activities. He is quickly establishing a fantastic reputation for his contentious and noncontentious trademark work for clients that include European supermarket chains. Formerly the co-head of trademarks at Mehmet Gün & Partners, Selma Ünlü is regarded as a “distinguished trademark litigator”. Now at NSN Law Office, she leads a team that advises on portfolio management, domain name issues and litigation.