Albanian trademarks underwent extensive changes in 2018 as a new regulation entered into force June. This provides clearer definitions of different trademark types and the representation requirements for common traditional and non-traditional marks, which enables applicants to better represent their marks, improving the overall quality of the examination process. Another change, which aligns local law with EU law, saw a literal interpretation applied to class headings used in applications’ lists of goods and services. In 2019 the number of trademark filings continued to rise, which is a positive for the market. A negative, on the other hand, is the continued use of Albania as a trade route for counterfeit goods entering the European Union; support from government authorities to tackle the problem is more readily available now than it was in the past, but commentators acknowledge that there is still plenty of room for improvement.
- Albanian IP Matters
- Boga & Associates
- Drakopoulos Law Firm
- Euromarkpat Albania
- Gjika & Associates
- Kalo & Associates Law Firm
- Loloçi & Associates
- Tonucci & Partners
- Wolf Theiss
- Zivko Mijatovic & Partners
Albanian IP Matters
Albanian IP is a new and exciting name on the market – it was established in October 2018 by Irma Cami and built from the ground up to render a hands-on and tailored A-to-Z trademark service. Hailed as a “diligent, collaborative and energetic” professional, Cami loves getting to grips with complex trademark problems – often contentious in nature – and sorting them out. Eschewing a cookie-cutter approach, she sees each case as unique, is highly persuasive and has a tremendous track-record of securing desired outcomes from the General Directorate of Industrial Property.
Boga & Associates
Boga & Associates provides transparent trademark advice and incisive strategic guidance, making it a go-to in Albania for many marquee clients. The set has been on a fantastic run recently, showcasing its impressively broad counselling capability advising Procter & Gamble on advertising, privacy, competition and consumer protection matters. It has also provided on-point risk assessments in connection with new product and service launches on behalf of Google. Further, it has acted for Anheuser-Busch in a number of trademark infringement cases against Budejovicky Budvar. Taking the reins is Renata Leka, a seasoned professional who never creates problems but always resolves them. Pragmatic, commercial and direct, she instils confidence in her clients because she is not afraid to tell them things that they may not necessarily want to hear.
Drakopoulos Law Firm
Drakopoulos is leading the way in the fight against fakes in Albania and the wider region and is the React network’s official representative in Greece, Cyprus and Albania. Lately, the team has been hammering counterfeiters on behalf of famous watch, jewellery and sportswear brands with Besnik Duraj the tip of the spear. Goal oriented and business focused, Duraj works in partnership with his clients, not at arm’s length, so that strategies are perfectly moulded to brand owners’ needs. Outside of the enforcement realm, Drakopoulos does a bang-up job on more routine prosecution matters and serves as an efficient one-stop shop across Southeastern Europe.
An international firm with a longstanding presence in Albania, Euromarkpat can sew up IP protections for clients locally and regionally with the minimum of fuss. Vastly experienced, Vjollca Shomo has anchored the practice in Tirana since it was established in 1994. She has the most intricate knowledge of the prosecution process in Albania, having managed the Albanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s IP department; she also draws on a deep well of knowledge and experience when it comes to opposition, cancellation and infringement proceedings in both trademarks and patents.
Gjika & Associates
Responsive, results focused and business oriented, Gjika & Associates’ compact IP group applies a deft touch to complex prosecution tasks, such as the registration of non-traditional trademarks; here, it has been acting for Künzli SwissSchuh, advising on the protection of position trademarks. The firm also has its wits about it in enforcement and litigation scenarios and has recently successfully handled several opposition and cancellation matters for Interbusiness for Industry and Trade, a Lebanon-based tobacco company, against Philip Morris. It has also put a hard stop to infringement of Shell International’s trademarks by several Albanian companies. Taking the lead on these mandates is Evis Jani, a versatile practitioner who acquits herself with distinction whatever she turns her hand to.
Kalo & Associates Law Firm
“Highly efficient and proactive”, commercially focused and internationally well connected, Kalo & Associates makes a worthy debut in the WTR 1000 for 2020. The dynamic full-service firm acts for a swathe of domestic and international companies protecting both trademarks and patents in Albania and provides trenchant enforcement and transactional advice. Head of the practice Eni Kalo excels as an all-round IP counsellor and in negotiating IP-driven commercial contracts. She is well accustomed to safeguarding the IP interests of household-name global companies.
Loloçi & Associates
Hailed as a pioneer of local IP practice, Loloçi continues to garner respect for advancing the state of IP law and practice in Albania. Deep specialisation in the trademark vertical, coupled with extensive experience handling large volumes of filing work, litigation and oppositions sets the firm apart from its competitors. Founding partner Krenar Loloçi sets the tone and is an authoritative voice in domestic trademark legislative and policy discussions.
PETOŠEVIĆ is the firm to call for companies needing a consistent approach to IP protection, portfolio management and enforcement throughout Eastern Europe. Whichever of the 17 offices that clients go to they will easily access a cavernous chest of resources and 100-plus specialists. Vladimir Nika captains the side in Albania. He knows the ins and outs of prosecuting IP rights and decades of experience make him a sage counsellor on all manner of other topics, including clearance and enforcement.
Tonucci & Partners
Italian firm Tonucci & Partners is highly rated in Albania for its litigation faculties and Balkan and Eastern Europe enforcement and transactional expertise. Enkelejda Muçaj is a vital contact in Tirana for all commercial activities; she dispatches transactional instructions with an assured hand, flexing abundant commercial and regulatory expertise. On the IP side, she has contributed much to the development of Albania copyright law.
Effectively leveraging the firm’s resources across Central and Southeastern Europe, Wolf Theiss’s Tirana IP line-up makes light work of complex cross-border trademark mandates. The dynamic set has been particularly active lately in the tech, media and telecoms field and, testament to its confidence and poise in contentious settings, has scored significant wins for a leading digital platform provider and the Albanian member of one of Europe’s largest telecoms providers. Taking the reins as local managing partner, former government minister Sokol Nako is an excellent port of call for advice in all commercial law areas. Blerta Nesho has a sharp focus on intellectual property and excellent industry experience in retail, consumer goods and life sciences. Transactional IP work is one of her fortes.
The international full-spectrum IP support package offered by ZMP enables companies to navigate a diverse array of brand protection challenges and stay sharp on the business end. Seamless coordination and knowledge sharing across 15 offices in Eastern Europe makes for a smooth service; the quality of attorneys in each location also makes for strategically smart advice. In Albania Dragana Lehocki is the go-to; she is an expert in trademark prosecution and domain name dispute resolution.
- Irma Cami - Albanian IP Matters
- Besnik Duraj - Drakopoulos Law Firm
- Evis Jani - Gjika & Associates
- Eni Kalo - Kalo & Associates Law Firm
- Dragana Lehocki - Zivko Mijatovic & Partners
- Renata Leka - Boga & Associates
- Krenar Loloçi - Loloçi & Associates
- Enkelejda Muçaj - Tonucci & Partners
- Sokol Nako - Wolf Theiss
- Blerta Nesho - Wolf Theiss
- Vladimir Nika - PETOŠEVIĆ
- Vjollca Shomo - Euromarkpat Albania