The Ukrainian trademark scene is in the midst of major change and the mood is buoyant. A new specialist IP court is eagerly anticipated to be operational by early 2020, once all judges have been appointed and the dust has settled following the country’s recent parliamentary elections. Three new Ukrainian firms have entered our tables this year, signalling a clear increase in the quality and visibility of domestic trademark offerings. A surge of younger partners is changing the country’s trademark landscape, which is now widely considered to be one of the more vibrant in Europe. Authorities’ concerted efforts to reform national institutions in accordance with EU directives have also been lauded by practitioners, although most recognise that there is still some work to be done in raising public awareness of trademark infringement and counterfeit goods.
- Baker McKenzie
- Doubinsky & Osharova
- Pakharenko & Partners
- Arzinger Law Office
- Gorodissky & Partners (Ukraine)
- Mikhailyuk Sorokolat & Partners
- Sayenko Kharenko
- Synergy IP Law Agency
- Vasil Kisil & Partners
- Borovyk & Partners
- DLA Piper Ukraine LLC
- Jurimex LC
- Marchenko Partners
“In all its work, AEQUO demonstrates outstanding expertise. The team has brilliant skills in trademark litigation and protection and has a thorough understanding of market trends. It makes good use of innovative technical tools too, which smooth case management and communication with the client.” The steadfast, internationally respected and versatile Ukrainian firm partners effectively with leading multinationals including Mitsubishi, Forbes, Dr Reddy’s and DuPont. The key contact for these and many others is trouble shooter Oleksandr Mamunya. The “young and brilliant litigator – one of the best in the country – has cutting-edge strategies for high-profile and complex matters”.
Arzinger Law Office
Arzinger is a reliable provider of comprehensive, far-sighted and meticulous trademark support. As a versatile outfit able to solve difficult and multifaceted trademark, advertising, unfair competition and regulatory law conundrums, it is in hot demand among leading brands. Kateryna Oliinyk provides strong leadership to the practice. Her acuity across a diverse range of fields – from trademark transactions to domain name disputes and data protection matters – sets her apart. The “insightful and valuable advice” that Oliinyk is known for stems from her “outstanding experience in internet-related litigation”. Among those who have experienced her quality first-hand, none have a bad word to say, while those who know her by reputation alone consistently acknowledge her standing in the market.
Asters has made several dynamic moves recently; it merged with Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners (EPAP) in October 2018 and has since established a presence in Washington DC, Brussels and London. The firm’s international reach, “deep dispute resolution expertise” and broad-scope trademark proficiency make it a magnet for Ukrainian and international brand owners with cross-border needs. With abundant conflict resolution and transactional skills, co-captains of the practice Julia Semeniy and Taras Kyslyy form an excellent team: “Practical, responsive and a top litigator, Julia is one of the country’s leading IP practitioners.” Kyslyy, who joined by way of the EPAP combination, provides rock-solid support to a host of famous names, including Paramount Pictures, Viacom, Teva and Orange. What is more, he is one of only two Ukrainian practitioners to be appointed as a WIPO domain name panellist.
AVELLUM’s trademark practice has only recently taken off but the firm is well worth a look for brand owners seeking dynamic support on important projects such as international product launches. At the beginning of 2019, the ensemble recruited Anton Polikarpov to lead the practice. He brings valuable in-house experience to the table, having previously worked at Global Spirits and Roshen – whose portfolio he continues to manage now in private practice. “Tough, fast, reliable, pragmatic, imaginative and wise, he is a first-class expert in all aspects of trademark law.”
Baker McKenzie’s Kiev brands practice is a premium one; its “creative” lawyers have a fine-grained understanding of how to protect and enforce trademark rights in Ukraine and a hotline to world-class experts in other Baker McKenzie locations, enabling them to give coherent global strategic advice to clients. A star not just locally but internationally, Ruslan Drobyazko is highly effective at motivating and inspiring the well-resourced team around him. To give a flavour of the quality and breadth of his work, he advises British American Tobacco on trademark protection and strategy in Ukraine and handles trademark infringement and anti-counterfeiting matters for Columbia Sportswear.
Borovyk & Partners
The trademark practitioners at Borovyk & Partners demonstrate deep technical and procedural knowledge and an enthusiasm for immersing themselves in clients’ businesses. Active since 2001, the firm is widely respected for its proficiency in all aspects of IP practice, although software patents and brands are particular fortes. Petro Borovyk and Bogdan Borovyk form the beating heart of the practice. Managing partner Petro has a granular understanding of how IP protection works in Ukraine, having previously been employed by the Ukrainian Intellectual Property Institute. Former in-house counsel Bogdan has a deft commercial touch and brings excellent language and communication skills to the practice, as well as an international outlook.
DLA Piper Ukraine LLC
With a Ukrainian IP group comprising five fee-earners, DLA Piper covers all the bases when it comes to the protection, enforcement and commercialisation of trademarks in the country. Seamlessly integrated into the DLA network, the Kiev crew gives clients the benefit of detailed local knowledge and easy access to a truly global pool of talent and resources. Taking advantage of her environment, leader of the practice Natalia Pakhomovska deploys sophisticated legal tech to onboard new portfolios with minimum fuss and manages them efficiently. Legal director Natalia Kirichenko is another name to note, providing valuable support across the trademark lifecycle.
Doubinsky & Osharova
“One of the best for trademark services in Ukraine” is the verdict on Doubinsky & Osharova. Its practitioners have a virtually unrivalled depth of experience and a proven ability to innovate when counselling clients on brand strategy, resolving multi-layered trademark problems and enhancing the efficiency of the practice. Household-name brands are drawn to Michael Doubinsky and Irina Osharova – two of the country’s foremost IP minds. Doubinsky is “the father of IP practice in Ukraine and a man of absolute gravitas”, while Osharova has unbeatable knowledge not only in trademarks but also in patent and design law, making her a sure bet for those with diverse portfolios. Tatiana Shpakovich, Victoria Sopilnyak and Anton Koval help to make up the deepest bench on the market. Shpakovich heads the patent and trademark department and is known for her attention to detail and efficiency. Sopilnyak takes the reins of the legal department and is an ace on pharmaceutical law and data protection. Koval is the lead litigator on deck and maintains a vibrant food and alcoholic beverages practice.
Accustomed to handling a prodigious trademark filing and office action workload, Gorodissky & Partners is known for its “exceptional efficiency and expertise”. Having switched completely to an electronic filing system in 2018, the streamlined outfit demonstrates an admirable mastery of process and subject matter, saving clients time and money while still rendering the watertight protections that they need.
Integrites combines substantive trademark law knowledge with deep industry expertise to render a holistic and commercially led trademark service. The firm has a particular knack for effectively handling internet-related trademark matters and pursuing creative enforcement strategies for domestic entities such as pharmaceutical company Farmak and international companies such as Panasonic. Setting the tone is Dariya Ganzienko, a practitioner distinguished by her blend of IP, media law, litigation and alternative dispute resolution skills. “Dariya is a great specialist with a deep knowledge of intellectual property. She tailors her approach to each case and develops excellent strategies to protect your interests without recourse to costly litigation.”
Leading boutique IPStyle is highlighted by commentators for its “exceptional professionalism”. “Its practitioners explain the necessity of every action they undertake and are there for you throughout every phase of the prosecution process – they do everything they can to make it as smooth and simple as can be.” Rights procurement and management is the firm’s particular strong suit. Increasingly resourceful in the litigation and transactional space, it meets the trademark needs of all its clients, including BlackBerry, which entrusts IPStyle with anti-counterfeiting mandates, and Israeli cosmetics company Christina, which relied on the firm to overcome a provisional refusal and clear the way for Ukrainian market entry. Mariya Ortynska is the driving force of the practice. “Vastly experienced, she provides outstanding advice on how to use intellectual property effectively for your business.”
“Young, ambitious” commercial firm Jurimex offers an attentive, competitive service to patrons hungry for outstanding trademark strategy at a reasonable price. Those who approach the group’s door can expect “substantial and timely consultation” at all stages of trademark filing, litigation and transactional matters. Head of intellectual property Yuriy Krainiak’s watchful eye ensures that quality never slides. His noted trademark acumen is reinforced by a firm grasp of media, internet and e-commerce law.
Known for its sterling work at the intersection of trademark and competition law, Marchenko Partners specialises in “sophisticated and effective” advice that “easily transcends the everyday”. The team focuses primarily on transactional and courtroom briefs, but also tackles complex trademark prosecution. Leading light and trademark maven Oleksandr Aleksyeyenko has been described as “innovative and advanced” by one competitor. His expertise across multiple legal fields makes him a rare practitioner indeed and explains why a host of globally renowned clients – including British multinational NEXT, for which he formulates enforcement strategy – depend on him for wise counsel.
Mikhailyuk Sorokolat & Partners
With a 200-strong army of trademark attorneys operating across the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), Mikhailyuk Sorokolat & Partners continues to be one of the top names in the region for filing, prosecution and opposition actions. Never content to stand still, this year the Ukrainian practice has focused on improving its client offering further yet, by implementing a new online trademark search tool to sit alongside its bespoke 24/7 portfolio management system. The trademark department’s twin driving forces are known throughout Ukraine for their enduring quality and experience. Managing partner Vadim Mikhailyuk is at the centre of all the firm does. Adept at protecting trademarks at every stage of their lifecycle, he is celebrated as an extremely versatile and focused practitioner. Meanwhile, Valentin Mikhailyuk possesses outstanding pedigree; dual-qualified as a patent and trademark attorney, he was the first in the country to gain this status.
Pakharenko & Partners
Pakharenko & Partners has “been around for ever” – or so it may seem. The outfit’s classic combination of heritage, quality and consistency has appealed to top domestic and international clients for almost as long as Ukraine has existed as an independent state and shows no sign of stopping now. Pakharenko & Partners possesses refined capabilities across the entire spectrum of trademark matters, including redoubtable anti-counterfeiting and plant variety practices. The firm’s talisman, Antonina Pakharenko-Anderson, is “a long-standing market leader”. Her connections in the Ukrainian IP policy scene are first rate, and she has helped to shape the direction of the market throughout her career. Anti-counterfeiting guru Alexander Pakharenko is equally comfortable in civil and criminal trademark proceedings. “Legally knowledgeable, he is an effective communicator who implements creative legal strategies, has a strong relationship with authorities in Ukraine and always protects the client’s interests.”
Regional prosecution powerhouse PETOŠEVIĆ prides itself on making things easy for clients. Communicative, flexible and proactive, the outfit is genuinely invested in patrons’ business needs and constantly strives to eliminate the distance between itself and in-house counsel. Working towards this aim and in response to surging demand, PETOŠEVIĆ recently opened an office in Minsk, adding to its already impressive geographical coverage across the CIS territories. Dina Petošević has been at the centre of the firm’s Ukrainian trademark offering from the beginning, having established the Kiev office in 2010. “Serious and competent,” she is a “leading figure in Ukraine” who brings experience gained from across the market to bear on every portfolio that she touches.
Full-service commercial outfit Sayenko Kharenko has its sights set firmly on the summit of the Ukrainian contentious trademark scene. In February 2019 the firm picked up a heavy-hitting litigation team spearheaded by renowned courtroom maven Yaroslav Ognevyuk – a “brilliant lawyer” whose move has been the talk of the town. He oversees the smooth operation of the firm’s IP division. The group also made a number of other excellent hires, notably that of renowned anti-counterfeiting practitioner Denis Krokhmalyov. Outside the courtroom, Sayenko Kharenko presents a sparkling strategic and transactional offering to boot, which is used by a host of top clients, including the joint-stock State Export-Import Bank of Ukraine.
Synergy IP Law Agency
Boutique outfit Synergy IP is known, first and foremost, for “the successful handling of complex trademark cases”. However, patrons on both sides of the contentious divide admire its “individual approach and comprehensive customer service”, with those surveyed making it clear that they trust the firm innately to make the right call on matters of great commercial importance. The 16-strong team tackles thorny trademark prosecution matters and tricky courtroom briefs with consummate ease, partly due to the quality of leadership in its ranks. Managing partner Viktoriia Ostapchuk operates primarily on the non-contentious wing of the practice. “Known for her creative approach to clients’ requests,” Ostapchuk is “an excellent IP specialist who works with full dedication” and brings a keen understanding of tax law to bear where relevant. Her “responsible and knowledgeable” partner Anna Kravchuk is dual-qualified as a trademark attorney and attorney at law. Their combined experience is a magnet for clients of all shapes and sizes.
Vasil Kisil & Partners
The “well-established, friendly” Vasil Kisil & Partners is a truly first-class formulator of complex, high-value trademark strategy. The firm is a reliable choice for domestic strategic counsel, but arguably soars highest when engaged in contentious work with an international dimension. With this in mind, it is unsurprising that courtroom commander Ilarion Tomarov attracts positive feedback from all corners of the globe. “A creative and efficient trademark enforcer with strong research skills, Ilarion has an uncommon approach and offers outstanding solutions. His energy, ability to see the whole picture and tendency to deliver advice in plain language understandable to businesspeople and not just lawyers set him apart.”
Other recommended experts
Dentons’ Oksana Horban possesses an unusually broad practice, leveraging her refined expertise in trademark, patent and copyright issues for the benefit of legions of top rights holders. Mikhail Ilyashev at Ilyashev & Partners is proficient across multiple commercial legal areas, including antitrust and international trade law – which is an added bonus when set alongside his profound trademark acuity. Maxim Koval, of the eponymous Koval & Partners, is “a universal IP attorney, capable of solving a variety of problems in IP rights protection and related fields”. He is also a judge at the Internet Association of Ukraine. Evris’ Alexander Molotai is a “well-known and highly reputable IP lawyer”. “A true expert with a wide background knowledge of local and international trademark issues, he innately understands the nuances of IP law and its intersection with other areas of legislation. He is strong in analysis, flexible minded and business oriented.” Recently moving to Ilyashev & Partners, Oleksandr Padalka acts across trademark, advertising, franchising and IT law, providing a versatility that is a huge asset to the team. The “clear and practical” Daria Valyavska heads up the IP practice at Redcliffe Partners. Described as “a pleasure to work with”, her “expertise, quick turnaround, knowledge of the local market and commercially focused advice are highly impressive”.
- Michael I Doubinsky - Doubinsky & Osharova
- Ruslan V Drobyazko - Baker McKenzie
- Oleksandr Mamunya - AEQUO
- Yaroslav Ognevyuk - Sayenko Kharenko
- Kateryna Oliinyk - Arzinger Law Office
- Mariya Ortynska - IPStyle
- Irina O Osharova - Doubinsky & Osharova
- Alexander Pakharenko - Pakharenko & Partners
- Antonina Pakharenko-Anderson - Pakharenko & Partners
- Julia N Semeniy - Asters
- Oleksandr Aleksyeyenko - Marchenko Partners
- Yuriy Krainiak - Jurimex LC
- Taras Kyslyy - Asters
- Valentin Mikhailyuk - Mikhailyuk Sorokolat & Partners
- Viktoriia Ostapchuk - Synergy IP Law Agency
- Anton Polikarpov - Avellum
- Tatiana Shpakovich - Doubinsky & Osharova
- Victoria Sopilnyak - Doubinsky & Osharova
- Ilarion Tomarov - Vasil Kisil & Partners
- Bogdan Borovyk - Borovyk & Partners
- Petro Borovyk - Borovyk & Partners
- Daria Ganzienko - Integrites
- Oksana Horban - Dentons
- Mikhail I Ilyashev - Ilyashev & Partners
- Natalia Kirichenko - DLA Piper Ukraine LLC
- Anton Koval - Doubinsky & Osharova
- Maxim Koval - Koval & Partners
- Anna Kravchuk - Synergy IP Law Agency
- Vadim Mikhailyuk - Mikhailyuk Sorokolat & Partners
- Alexander Molotai - Evris Law
- Oleksandr B Padalka - Ilyashev & Partners
- Natalia Pakhomovska - DLA Piper Ukraine LLC
- Dina Petošević - PETOŠEVIĆ
- Daria Valyavska - Redcliffe Partners