Sweden

New trademark legislation has practitioners buzzing in Sweden. On 1 January 2019 the country updated its existing laws to align them with the most recent EU Trademarks Directive. The change is expected to enhance the scope of protection offered to rights holders, opening further avenues to safeguard more types of media and technology. As the graphical representation requirement no longer applies, sounds and holograms are now eligible for registration – a concept in which Swedish entrepreneurs are increasingly interested. The legislative amendments also concern imitation products, whereby Customs has been granted the authority to seize allegedly infringing goods – even in transit. Although the destruction of goods is off the table, these efforts should help in the fight against counterfeits.

Firms: enforcement and litigation

Firms: prosecution and strategy

Advokatbyrån Gulliksson

“Without a doubt, Gulliksson is a strong pick for cutting-edge local and international work. The team takes a proactive approach and has a genuine interest in its clients’ industries – you can count on it to deliver.” The set has enhanced its prosecution offering with Cecilia Tholse Rogmark taking the lead on non-contentious briefs. “You can place your full trust in her; she is easy to work with and highly efficient. Cecilia has a great network of contacts and successfully oversees marks on a global scale.” Mattias Malmstedt has been acting at the confluence of competition law and intellectual property for over two decades. While devising strategies and managing the portfolios of Tetra Pak and NetEnt, his forte is high-stakes litigation. Joining him in the WTR 1000 this year is Per Ericsson. “Hands on, pragmatic and persistent are the words to describe him. He has a deep-rooted knowledge of regulated industries and knows how to relay that into a commercial context. Per can spot a structural weakness from a mile away and can fix it in a cinch – he is not just a lawyer but a business partner.” ATG, the nation’s largest horse betting company, instructed Ericsson in a precedent-setting case for the sector.

Advokatfirman Lindahl

“Lindahl is an obvious choice for trademark matters in Sweden. Its market-leading capabilities ensure an excellent service with clear, concise and high-quality advice from the group. It is quick to respond and expertly navigates different legal landscapes in cross-border work.” Interviewees are quick to acknowledge the holistic approach that Johan Norderyd has to brand protection: “Johan displays the utmost professionalism. He handles each instruction with exceptional attention to detail. His business acumen is exquisite and the level of experience that he brings to the table really shines when he tackles matters of incredible complexity. He always exceeds expectations and does it at a reasonable price too.”

AWA Sweden AB 

“Swift, accessible and impressive,” AWA’s presence on the global IP scene is undeniable. With 12 offices in Sweden alone, it also maintains a strong foothold in Denmark and Germany, as well as Beijing and Hong Kong. Its set-up is perfect for those looking to establish and protect their brands throughout Europe. “Full of energy and solution oriented, Kristian Martinsson always has a trick up his sleeve. He uses his stellar analytical abilities to manage portfolios with finesse and get copycats off the market.” Through collaboration with Yellow Brand Protection and the acquisition of domain name consultancy Dotkeeper, the unit has taken its enforcement efforts online too. The man behind this move is CEO Magnus Hallin. His calculated approach and strong decision making are appreciated by clients as well as the AWA ensemble. He is joined by versatile WTR 1000 newcomer Lars Pettersson. “Pragmatic and efficient without compromising on expertise and good judgement – his advice is world class.”

Cirio Advokatbyra AB

Recently established full-service outfit Cirio makes its debut in the WTR 1000 this year thanks to effusive praise from all corners of the market. “It has made a fantastic name for itself in a short time. The group is an absolute pleasure to work with and truly understands the value that intellectual property has in a commercial environment. As a result, it always comes up with progressive and constructive solutions.” IP department captain Sanna Wolk and brand protection division spearhead David Leffler work hand in hand to deliver crisp results. “One of the sharpest academic minds in the country, Sanna’s trademark knowledge reaches far and wide. She is energetic and ambitious with valuable ideas as to brand strategy.” Recommendations for Leffler’s “diligence, personability and negotiation skills” come pouring in. The all-rounder “is invaluable to the appeals and settlement process of a dispute. He is extremely attentive to every detail of the case and has a way of explaining them in a digestible manner. You can only say the most wonderful of things about David.”

GOZZO Advokater

The full gamut of trademark services can be found at business law firm GOZZO but its anti-counterfeiting abilities are where it really shines. Having cultivated fruitful relationships with Swedish police and prosecutors, the team knows exactly what will cut the mustard in critical cases. Ann-Charlotte Söderlund Björk is a key player in the fight against fakes. Her extremely impressive CV includes 30 years of private practice experience, several positions on various committees and the achievement of establishing the Swedish Anti-counterfeiting Group (SACG).

Groth & Co 

“One of the most stable firms in Sweden, Groth & Co is open minded and always exploring new ways to complement a company’s overall business strategy with great success.” With posts in Alicante, Munich, Shanghai and Stockholm, it takes on large-scale instructions with consummate ease. Vitamin Well recently relied on the group to handle its non-contentious matters in more than 60 countries – a mandate in which managing director Mats Lundberg played a hand. A talented strategist and “highly regarded member of the community, Mats is someone you can trust with absolutely anything”. In the words of one enthusiastic client, Helena Perneborg “performs outstandingly. Her advice is commercially sound because she has a thorough understanding of how we operate. Our meetings are always fun – she’s great to work with!” Dispute resolution ace Perneborg excels in the food, steel and engineering sectors.

Roschier, Attorneys Ltd

“When it comes to protecting intellectual property in the Nordics, Roschier is in a league of its own.” More than 50 “friendly, service-minded and proactive attorneys, who are consistently up to date on legal developments worldwide” serve up holistic counsel in Sweden and Finland. Erik Ficks instills the local troop with robust leadership. Well versed in each stage of the trademark lifecycle and “an expert at problem solving, Ficks’ expertise is invaluable”. He cooks up global strategies for Bonnier Books and manages the Moomin characters portfolio with Rebecca Huselius. The industry knowledge gained in her 10 years at the Pernod Ricard family managing the global portfolio of the Absolut Company, among others, gives her a competitive edge. The outfit recently drafted Gustav Melander into its ranks. “From the first day that you instruct Gustav, you receive incredible support. Not only does he give pragmatic and clear advice, he also shows a genuine interest in the product and situation at hand.” His background as senior legal adviser at the Swedish Patent Office’s (SPO) designs and trademarks department, as well as a seconded national expert at the EUIPO, guarantees that he can tackle any scenario that comes his way.

Sandart & Partners Advokatbyrå KB 

“Number one across the board for IP and advertising law” is the verdict on Sandart & Partners. “It has a brilliant track record in court while also taking a genuine interest in clients’ businesses, providing highly relevant and analytical advice at a reasonable cost. Time and time again, it proves itself as a reliable firm with integrity. To top it off, it also has an impressive local and international network of lawyers and academics who all excel within their fields of expertise.” A stalwart presence in courtroom proceedings, Anders Kylhammar is in high demand. “He is an exceptional litigator who comes out with bulletproof arguments. Everybody wants him on their side – he is a joy to work with.” Kylhammar often joins forces with the “sharp, solution-oriented and responsive” Karin Cederlund. “She is one of the best for contentious work and her advice is top-notch.” Peter Sande makes up the third pillar of the practice. A smart choice for pan-European disputes – when he shoots, he never misses.

Setterwalls Advokatbyrå AB

Intellectual property sits at the heart of “young and dynamic” full-service firm Setterwalls. The unit lays down the foundations of a successful brand brick by brick and brings the hammer down in enforcement proceedings – companies with international ambitions have their pick of additional desks in China, France and Germany. Head honcho “Per Lidman is a reliable source of support and information in parallel import scenarios. His knowledge on the topic is always current and extremely vast.” Lidman’s former stint as general counsel at a listed biometrics company stands him in good stead when managing portfolios and acting in hard-hitting pharmaceutical litigation. WTR 1000 debutant Sophia Spala “handles enforcement matters with a great overview. She knows all the pitfalls and never forgets the economic aspects of the case. She is easy to work with and her advice is prompt and hands on. One of the most outstanding lawyers out there – she is a true rainmaker.” Getting signatures on the bottom line of IP-rich deals is her forte.

Synch Advokat AB

“If you’re looking for a modern and technology-focused firm, Synch fits the bill. It memorises the business objectives of every client, analyses each potential risk and gives perceptive recommendations along with alternatives. The team’s cooperative nature and transparent communication ensure that patrons feel safe and secure.” Working with start-ups and multinationals alike, Sara Sparring and Mathilda Nordmark have 360-degree protection covered. “Dedicated, detail oriented and customer centric, the pair deliver first-class work quickly and efficiently.” Sparring handles filings artfully and enjoys rolling up her sleeves to get stuck into anti-counterfeiting matters as the recently appointed SACG president. Nordmark brought her skill set to Synch in December 2018 and flourishes in contentious settings.

Valea AB 

Internal cohesiveness is the secret behind Valea’s streamlined operations. Its practitioners collaborate closely across their bases in Gothenburg, Malmö and Stockholm, providing enhanced local coverage to major Scandinavian entities. Industry knowledge is of utmost importance to the troupe of professionals, who are frequently seconded to clients’ in-house teams to gain a deeper understanding of the sectors in which they perform. Linda Granstrand Füle, Monika Colak and Magnus Johansson form a dream team, deftly navigating the full spectrum of IP rights protection. Drafting, filing and enforcement will not faze the agile Granstrand Füle, who has been in the game for two decades. A smooth negotiator, Colak can get rights holders out of any skirmish and has the commercialisation of intangible assets down to a tee. Johansson feels at home at the intersection of technology and law, where he drafts the tightest of transaction agreements.

Vinge

Trademark titan Vinge has the full package. “The level of service and standard of experience are gold class – I would never consider using any other firm,” exclaims one client. “It looks at matters holistically and is exceptionally strong across the board, especially in litigation. Its court preparations and performance quality bring outstanding results.” This is due in no small part to Håkan Borgenhäll. “One of the most important players in town, Håkan is a star – his name and reputation precede him. You know he will step in and save the day when he is on a case.” Borgenhäll’s right-hand Richard Wessman “gives each case abundant care and attention”. “Richard has a brilliant mind, he is a scholar and a thinker who puts together superb arguments. His theoretical skills are excellent, as is his grasp of commercial realities.” On the prosecution front, Anette Henrysson leads with verve. She has an aptitude for oppositions and is a frequent face at the EUIPO, acting on behalf of Tele 2, Baby Björn and the Swedish Olympic Committee. Not one to push paper around, Pär Leander understands that intellectual property does not operate in a legal vacuum and looks to drive value with his branding strategies. His approach is sought out by the likes of Apple and Lantmännen. For those in a licensing tight spot, Sofia Ljungblad is adept at stitching agreements together with a steady hand.

Westerberg & Partners Advokatbyrå Ab

“Consistent on quality, Westerberg & Partners is best in show for trademark work.” Since its inception last year, the outfit has received a torrent of instructions from both sides of the contentious/non-contentious divide. A favourite among Scandinavian as well as international clients, Helena Wassén Öström and Henrik Wistam safeguard some of the world’s most well-known marks. Together they oversee the global portfolios of H&M, Permobil and Altia. Wistam has also been representing Crocs in 3D trademark infringement proceedings. “You can place a lot of trust in them both, their expertise on a national and EU level is rock solid. Their clear communication and executable recommendations produce great results. Helena and Henrik are lovely to work with.”

Zacco 

Zacco stands at the forefront of innovation. Realising the increasing importance of online brand protection, its offering is constantly updated to keep abreast with changes in technology. Users of the service know that the squad will leave no stone unturned when it comes to protecting IP rights. The set takes its cue from Claes Agnvall, whose experience is admired by many on the market. A former examiner at the SPO and the EUIPO, Agnvall drafts watertight applications and sees them through to completion. Bringing superb licensing capabilities to the practice, Martin Tranälv helps clients to get the most out of their intangible assets.

Other recommended experts

“Super energetic” Henrik Bengtsson enjoys a varied practice. “He is one of Sweden’s best for transactions” and can be found at Advokatfirman Delphi. “A pleasure to work with,” MAQS’ Christina Berggren is described as “professional, prompt and dedicated”. The all-rounder advises the Coca-Cola Company and Volvo Trademark Holding. Licensing maestro Oscar Björkman Possne has mastered the art of IP value creation, flying the flag of Mannheimer Swartling. Over at Next Advokater, “Tom Kronhöffer has quickly become a first-class litigator. He opts for a hands-on approach and always keeps his clients’ interests at the front of his mind.” Based at NORDIA Law, “Fredrik Persson comes highly recommended for his prosecution and enforcement work. Responsive, reliable and easy to work with, he understands a business’ commercial goals and acts accordingly.” Jesper Sellin has a knack for confecting iron-wrought enforcement strategies at Potter Clarkson. Working out of his eponymous law firm, Heidenstam Legal Advokat, the “brilliant Peter von Heidenstam has a resolute focus on getting imitation products of the market”.

Individuals: anti-counterfeiting

  • Anette Henrysson - Vinge
  • Ann-Charlotte Söderlund Björk - GOZZO Advokater
  • Sara Sparring - Synch Advokat AB
  • Peter von Heidenstam - Heidenstam Legal Advokat AB
  • Henrik Wistam - Westerberg & Partners Advokatbyrå Ab

Individuals: enforcement and litigation

  • Henrik Bengtsson - Advokatfirman Delphi
  • Håkan Borgenhäll - Vinge
  • Karin Cederlund - Sandart & Partners Advokatbyrå KB
  • Anders Kylhammar - Sandart & Partners Advokatbyrå KB
  • Peter Sande - Sandart & Partners Advokatbyrå KB
  • Ann-Charlotte Söderlund Björk - GOZZO Advokater
  • Peter von Heidenstam - Heidenstam Legal Advokat AB
  • Richard Wessman - Vinge
  • Henrik Wistam - Westerberg & Partners Advokatbyrå Ab
  • Christina Berggren - MAQS Law Firm
  • Oscar Björkman Possne - Mannheimer Swartling
  • Per Ericsson - Advokatbyrån Gulliksson
  • Erik Ficks - Roschier, Attorneys Ltd
  • Linda Granstrand Füle - Valea AB 
  • Magnus Johansson - Valea AB
  • Per Josefson - Mannheimer Swartling
  • Tom Kronhöffer - Next Advokater KB
  • Pär Leander - Vinge
  • Per Lidman - Setterwalls Advokatbyrå AB 
  • Mattias Malmstedt - Advokatbyrån Gulliksson
  • Johan Norderyd - Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Mathilda Nordmark - Synch Advokat AB
  • Lars Pettersson - AWA Sweden AB
  • Jesper Sellin - Potter Clarkson AB
  • Sophia Spala - Setterwalls Advokatbyrå AB
  • Sara Sparring - Synch Advokat AB

Individuals: prosecution and strategy

  • Claes Agnvall - Zacco 
  • Karin Cederlund - Sandart & Partners Advokatbyrå KB
  • Monika Colak - Aera 
  • Linda Granstrand Füle - Valea AB 
  • Magnus Hallin - AWA Sweden AB
  • Rebecca Huselius - Roschier, Attorneys Ltd
  • Magnus Johansson - Valea AB 
  • Pär Leander - Vinge
  • David Leffler - Cirio Advokatbyra AB
  • Sofia Ljungblad - Vinge
  • Mats Lundberg - Groth & Co
  • Kristian Martinsson - AWA Sweden AB
  • Gustav Melander - Roschier, Attorneys Ltd
  • Helena Perneborg - Groth & Co
  • Fredrik Persson - NORDIA Law
  • Lars Pettersson - AWA Sweden AB
  • Cecilia Tholse Rogmark - Advokatbyrån Gulliksson
  • Jesper Sellin - Potter Clarkson AB
  • Sophia Spala - Setterwalls Advokatbyrå AB
  • Sara Sparring - Synch Advokat AB
  • Martin Tranälv - Zacco 
  • Helena Wassén Öström - Westerberg & Partners Advokatbyrå Ab
  • Sanna Wolk - Cirio Advokatbyra AB