The major recent IP development in Ukraine was the establishment of the High Court for Intellectual Property in September 2017; throughout 2018, the selection procedure for the court’s 21 judges took place. While some commentators have expressed the view that the reform was not as considered as it could have been and that, for example, there was an insufficiently broad discussion of the change before its implementation, IP practitioners appear to be very positive about developments and expect faster, more consistent and well-reasoned decisions to be made in trademark cases once the court is up and running.
Aequo is a compelling choice in Ukraine as it matches its outstanding litigation capability with comprehensive trademark prosecution expertise; the team also provides a level of client service that discerning international brand owners will be familiar – and comfortable – with. The relationship partner for a panoply of world-famous companies is Oleksandr Mamunya, one of the brightest stars of the market whose work regularly pushes the boundaries of Ukrainian IP law. He is hailed by peers for his “deep all-round IP expertise” and “excellent litigation skills”. Mamunya is the name everyone knows, but the team around him must be recognised and respected for its depth; 10 lawyers give clients all the firepower and resources they need.
Arzinger Law Office
A dynamic independent full-service firm, Arzinger is committed to excellence in intellectual property. Testament to this, the team has cultivated a granular knowledge not just of trademark law but of adjacent areas, including unfair competition, advertising, e-commerce and data protection. With such broad horizons, the group can tackle any brand-related problem and come up with a commercially conscious solution. In Kateryna Oliinyk the firm has an inspirational leader for its IP section. She gets some of the best feedback of any Ukrainian practitioner and ascends into the WTR 1000 gold tier for 2019 as a result. “Kateryna is a brilliant IP lawyer with outstanding experience in internet-related litigation.” “She is a superior trademark attorney who handles routine matters very practically and complex cases creatively. She is a great communicator and a detail-oriented person who provides insightful and valuable advice.” Lana Sinichkina is another name to note, particularly for pharmaceutical, food and beverage and retail clients; she understands the competitive landscape and what makes for a distinctive brand in those sectors.
“Asters is an excellent full-service firm with a very strong IP practice – a real warhorse when it comes to contentious matters.” In October 2018, Asters and Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners merged in Kiev to create an impressive IP outfit with the breadth of talent needed to chase down trademark infringers, wherever they might be located. The new team is perfectly poised to support global brands; its advice is underpinned by exceptional sector knowledge, and always packaged in a way that in-house counsel can easily present to the C-suite. Master strategists Taras Kyslyy and Julia Semeniy head up the practice. Kyslyy is known as “an excellent professional who is very responsive to his clients’ needs”; he is currently deploying his expertise strategically, efficiently and, above all, effectively for longstanding client Viacom as well as many others, including Paramount Pictures. Semeniy has also seen plenty of action recently, acting for Car-Freshener Corporation in various infringement actions and putting a stop to unauthorised uses of Ferrero’s RAFFAELLO and KINDER SURPRISE trademarks. The newly merged firm is highly proficient on the non-contentious side too; it prosecutes with precision and gets signatures on the bottom line of IP-rich commercial and M&A transactions with a minimum of fuss.
Baker McKenzie deploys cutting-edge technology tools to manage global portfolios efficiently and cost effectively and monitor infringement activity – no other firm in Ukraine comes close to its sophistication in this regard. Skipper of the ship locally and supported by a crew of terrific associates is Ruslan Drobyazko. “The quality of his work makes him a bright star” and the extensive extra-curricular activities he engages in – publishing articles, taking to the podium as a speaker and filling lead roles in various IP associations and committees – sets him apart as an international IP thinker.
Borovyk & Partners
The trademark practice at this IP, commercial and litigation firm is maturing nicely under the guidance and leadership of Petro Borovyk and Bogdan Borovyk. Founding and managing partner Petro is the perfect person to oversee the patent and trademark prosecution practice – he previously served as the Ukrainian Intellectual Property Institute deputy director in its patent examination division, which means that he has first-hand knowledge of the organisation’s tendencies and approach. He contributes much to the advancement of IP practice in the country as a sought-after consultant on legislative reform. Bogdan has been ramping up the firm’s IP litigation and counselling practices since he joined the firm in 2014. He also has an interesting background, having worked in-house at Procter & Gamble before joining the Kiev office of German firm Beiten Burkhardt; this experience lends his advice a commercial and international flavour. Without ever dropping the ball on quality, he handles a huge volume of work; managing the worldwide trademark and design portfolio of Anex Baby, advising Geberit Group on trademark licensing agreements and implementing anti-counterfeiting plans for Beiersdorf are just some of his recent highlights.
DLA Piper Ukraine LLC
DLA Piper debuts in the WTR 1000 Ukraine chapter this year. Natalia Pakhomovksa has the team performing at a high level on internationally relevant IP-driven transactions and on broader IP protection and enforcement mandates. Pakhomovksa brings extensive data protection and privacy expertise to the table. Her colleague Natalia Kirichenko is a whizz on advertising, sponsorship and unfair competition matters. Olena Vardamatska recently joined the team from Wolf Theiss and provides extra depth.
Doubinsky & Osharova
Doubinsky & Osharova is an IP pioneer and market leader in Ukraine. It maintains robust prosecution and enforcement practices and has “a deep team of great specialists”; this is reflected in the ranking table in the guide this year, which features five names from the “famous boutique”. It all starts with Michael Doubinsky, “a man of great gravitas”, “a top strategist” and “the father of IP services in Ukraine”. Irina Osharova is another seasoned pro with decades of experience; she was one of the first certified patent attorneys in the country. Senior partner Tatiana Shpakovich acquits herself with distinction whatever she turns her hand to. Her expertise, like that of her colleagues, is extremely broad, encompassing everything from search and clearance work to filing and IP monetisation in connection with both patents and trademarks. Taking the lead on the set’s litigation and enforcement efforts are Victoria Sopilnyak and Yaroslav Ognevyuk. They may be two of the youngest team members, but they are also highly experienced; Sopilnyak entered the practice in 2001 and Ognevyuk in 2002. Sopilnyak came in for special mention during the WTR 1000 research period: “She is a great practitioner who handles challenging projects creatively.”
Gorodissky & Partners
Already a prolific filer, Gorodissky & Partners Ukraine recently completed its switch to a paperless setup, which enables it to work even more seamlessly. The ensemble also has its own database for the purposes of automatic target date tracking, which further enhances efficiency. Managing partner Nina Moshynska is an authority on all aspects of IP protection. Staying the course for her clients, she demonstrates a talent for overcoming provisional refusals from the Ukrainian trademark office. Her team collaborates well with Gorodissky practitioners in Russia to render a tight regional service.
In little over 10 years, IPStyle has become a byword for quality in Ukrainian IP circles. The firm started out life with a focus on obtaining patent and trademark protection – something it still does extremely well – but has been hard at work developing its litigation practice which was founded in 2014; this effort has borne fruit for the firm in the form of an increasing number of contentious instructions and paid dividends for clients in the form of some significant wins. Mariya Ortynska currently serves on INTA’s Anti-counterfeiting Committee, giving her a solid foundation in international enforcement principals. A smart 360-degree IP lawyer, Ortynska is recommended for her “excellent substantive and practical knowledge”.
General practice firm Jurimex supports brand owners in many meaningful ways; it efficiently registers rights protecting new products and services and monetises them lucratively and enforces them rigorously. The set stands out for its expertise in the media, advertising and internet law fields. Assured leadership is provided by technically astute practitioner Yuriy Krainiak. He generously shares his IP knowledge and insight as a prolific author and prominent lecturer.
Mikhailyuk Sorokolat & Partners
Mikhailyuk Sorokolat & Partners is distinguished by its experience, its size and its geographic reach; the firm has been at the IP coalface for over 25 years, has over 180 IP professionals and offices in Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Russia, Ukraine and Uzbekistan. Quite simply, it is the place to come for watertight trademark protection throughout the Commonwealth of Independent States. Other eye-catching features and hallmarks of the side include a significantly higher than average success rate in cancellations and oppositions and a well-developed online on-demand portfolio management system. The creator of this was managing partner Vadim Mikhailyuk an outstanding IP problem solver who is constantly looking at ways to innovate and improve his firm’s service. In Valentin Mikhailyuk clients have an indispensable strategic sounding board. He has the distinction of being the first patent and trademark attorney registered in Ukraine and assisted in the establishment of the IP system when the country became independent.
Pakharenko & Partners
“A great choice for international clients,” Pakharenko & Partners is “one of the most respected IP firms in Ukraine”. “It has vast experience and deep IP knowledge of all things trademark and maintains a leading anti-counterfeiting and enforcement practice.” The enduring success of the organisation is down to Antonina Pakharenko-Anderson, an “unbelievably good practitioner” who helps set the IP policy-making agenda in the country. Much credit also goes to Alexander Pakharenko, a protean professional who delivers crisp results from the trademark office and in the courts.
PETOŠEVIĆ is a go-to for pan-Eastern European IP protection; it has over 120 professionals in 16 offices and can serve as a single point of contact for more than 30 jurisdictions. Its baseline prices are also highly competitive and, as it works internationally, the firm can flexibly offer customised price packages to clients. Taking the reins of the groups in Russia, Ukraine and Uzbekistan is Dina Petošević; she is extremely well organised and a great communicator who can guide clients through what, to them, is often uncharted territory. She oversees all aspects of patent and trademark protection and enforcement with an eagle eye for quality. Senior associate Taras Kulbaba maintains desks in Brussels and Kiev. Through effective contract negotiation and judicious enforcement, Kulbaba never fails to unlock IP value for his clients.
Modern business law firm Sayenko Kharenko deftly tailors its IP services to suit the needs of marquee international brand owners as well as innovative domestic start-ups. Appreciative of the business value of a strong and distinctive brand, the team approaches every mandate with a rigorously commercial mindset, whether sealing the deal on an IP-rich transaction, fighting it out in court in a complex infringement suit or managing a portfolio. Main man Oleksandr Padalka is “wise and keen” and thinks about brands holistically. He is the top authority in Ukraine when it comes to advertising law and is a member of the Global Advertising Lawyers Alliance.
Synergy IP Law Agency
“Synergy IP Law is made up of a creative, professional and experienced team of specialised attorneys and advocates.” It leaves nothing to chance when safeguarding clients’ rights and analyses issues thoroughly from multiple angles in order to bring about optimal results; that said, it is also efficient and knows that companies are looking for speedy solutions so that they can carry on with their business. As testament to this, the side has a gift for facilitating early wins in disputes. Managing partner Viktoriia Ostapchuk has mastered the art of persuasion and inevitably gets what she needs from the Ukrainian IP office. She has an excellent international network too, giving clients the confidence to entrust her with global portfolios. Peers acknowledge her as “an impressive expert in intellectual property and tax”. Her colleague Anna Kravchuk “always exceeds expectations and gets excellent results thanks to her total professionalism and attention to detail”.
Vasil Kisil draws on its deep reservoir of trademark litigation experience to nip brand-related disputes in the bud where possible and go the distance in court where necessary. Its specialist expertise in parallel import issues and anti-counterfeiting strategies gives it an edge over many of its competitors. Head of intellectual property Ilarion Tomarov is “highly creative when it comes to litigation tactics and is very knowledgeable about getting damages awards in trademark infringement cases. He provides timely strategic advice and is extremely responsive, flexible and dedicated.”
Other recommended experts
Oleksandr Aleksyeyenko leads the IP team at Marchenko Partners, a firm well known for its work in the life sciences sector. Aleksyeyenko acts for many top pharmaceutical companies, as well as industry leaders in other sectors and shines on matters sitting at the intersection of IP and competition law. Daria Ganzienko of Integrites is a go-to for representation in domain name disputes. She has a deep knowledge of the media sector. Operating out of Dentons, Oksana Horban flexes broad IP knowledge but is best known for her contract negotiation and enforcement proficiency. Mikhail Ilyashev, the managing partner of Ilyashev & Partners, is a leading light on alternative dispute resolution in intellectual property and other legal disciplines. “Koval & Partners is very experienced in the IP area and provides a high-quality service. Its partners, such as Maxim Koval, are excellent to deal with in complex transactions.”
- Michael I Doubinsky - Doubinsky & Osharova
- Ruslan V Drobyazko - Baker McKenzie
- Oleksandr Mamunya - AEQUO
- Yaroslav Ognevyuk - Doubinsky & Osharova
- Kateryna Oliinyk - Arzinger Law Office
- Irina O Osharova - Doubinsky & Osharova
- Alexander Pakharenko - Pakharenko & Partners
- Antonina Pakharenko-Anderson - Pakharenko & Partners
- Yuriy Krainiak - Jurimex LC
- Taras Kyslyy - Asters
- Valentin Mikhailyuk - Mikhailyuk Sorokolat & Partners
- Nina N Moshynska - Gorodissky & Partners
- Mariya Ortynska - IPStyle
- Julia N Semeniy - Asters
- Tatiana Shpakovich - Doubinsky & Osharova
- Lana Sinichkina - Arzinger Law Office
- Victoria Sopilnyak - Doubinsky & Osharova
- Oleksandr Aleksyeyenko - Marchenko 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
- Maxim Koval - Koval & Partners
- Anna Kravchuk - Synergy IP Law Agency
- Taras Kulbaba - PETOŠEVIĆ
- Vadim Mikhailyuk - Mikhailyuk Sorokolat & Partners
- Viktoriia Ostapchuk - Synergy IP Law Agency
- Oleksandr B Padalka - Sayenko Kharenko
- Natalia Pakhomovska - DLA Piper Ukraine LLC
- Dina Petošević - PETOŠEVIĆ
- Ilarion Tomarov - Vasil Kisil & Partners
- Olena Vardamatska - DLA Piper Ukraine LLC