Wiggin LLP

WTR Research

The WTR 1000 focuses exclusively on trademark practice and has firmly established itself as the definitive 'go-to' resource for those seeking world-class legal trademark expertise.

Bronze - Firms: prosecution and strategy

Recommended - Firms: transactions

Gold - Firms: enforcement and litigation

An innovative firm which stands out for its strategic approach to brand protection and enforcement, Wiggin enjoyed a red-letter year in 2021, growing its team to 30 dedicated IP professionals and expanding its capabilities in the ever-relevant area of online brand enforcement. “The firm demonstrates strong trademark knowledge, but also brings a calm, common-sense approach to all aspects of litigation. Its team is precise, diligent and thorough, and does an excellent job for clients.” One big name on its roster is Warner Bros, which Sara Ashby and John Colbourn have represented in over 30 contentious registry matters since 2019. Heading up the IP team, Ashby is a font of knowledge on designs law, while her wider commercial insight means she knows how to deal with trademark disputes that veer off-piste. Colbourn was promoted to the partnership in 2020 and is adept at steering international enforcement campaigns with innumerable moving parts. Rachel Alexander guides the trademark strategy of UK video game developer Kwalee Ltd. “Wholeheartedly recommended” by clients, Alexander is an online enforcement maven who is famed for having appeared in the Supreme Court on behalf of Cartier. Also technologically minded is Calum Smyth, whose arrival at Wiggin two years ago followed a stint in-house at Barclays Bank; he blends contentious prowess with a penchant for the negotiation of IP-heavy transactions. Similarly versatile is Michael Browne, who is as capable at drafting agreements – and especially franchising agreements – as he is at fighting trademark, passing-off and competition disputes.

Silver - Firms

A new player on the Benelux trademark scene, Wiggin has put down roots in Brussels, where its “knowledgeable and dynamic team” has the wherewithal to secure vital EU decisions on behalf of brand owners. It recently enlisted the talents of “top-notch lawyers” Carina Gommers and Carl De Meyer – in the words of one peer, “formidable opponents who will make Wiggin a force to be reckoned with”. “Carina is an outstanding lawyer with a thorough understanding of enforcement on a European scale. She always impresses with her pragmatic approach and renders advice of the highest quality.” The “straight-shooting” De Meyer is “fantastic – he understands the practical aspects of trademark protection and has a strong business sense. His level of expertise makes him an invaluable source of advice”.

Firm Profile

Wiggin advises creative and technology-driven businesses, content owners, well-known brands and trade associations, providing thought leadership and cutting-edge strategic IP advice. The breadth and depth of knowledge and expertise of its team extends across all IP rights. The team assists clients to generate, preserve, exploit and expand the value of their IP assets, and anticipates and contributes to developments in IP policy. 

Credited as being a “one-stop powerhouse” and “one of the top addresses in London for contentious and non-contentious work” (WTR 1000), the firm provides a one-stop-shop 360˚ service for trademark matters, including for businesses operating in an international context. The firm’s combined trademark management, litigation and commercial IP practice offers significant strength and depth to clients looking for well-rounded trademarks advice.

The firm’s trademarks team is a fully integrated practice of lawyers and trademark attorneys, with its trademarks management practice sitting alongside its dispute resolution and commercial practices. The team has a genuine sector-focused approach so as to really understand the landscapes in which its clients operate and to ensure the firm is there to help clients develop and protect all aspects of their businesses.

Wiggin advises on all aspects of trademarks and brand protection across the entire brand life cycle, providing “cutting-edge expertise in non-traditional marks, designs, international brand strategy, portfolio management, litigation, alternative dispute resolution and transactions” (WTR 1000) and strategic trademark advice at every stage.

With offices in the United Kingdom and Brussels, Wiggin has a deep understanding of the UK, Belgian and European court and appellate court procedures. The team has significant experience of court litigation, registry disputes and validity proceedings, and robustly asserts and defends its clients’ rights when required. Wiggin acts directly before the UK Intellectual Property Office, the Benelux Office for Intellectual Property, the EUIPO and the WIPO.

Wiggin works with a range of independent firms for overseas matters, who are experts in local trademark laws, and is well-versed in managing global portfolios and coordinating overseas and multi-territorial enforcement matters.

Wiggin’s practitioners recognise their clients’ commercial concerns and understand the importance of pursuing mediation and alternative dispute resolution procedures where appropriate – many matters are successfully resolved outside court. Wiggin is renowned for its online content, copyright and anti-counterfeiting work. It has been at the forefront of leading cases in this area – for example, acting for the claimants in Warner Music UK v TuneIn and Cartier v BT, which established important precedents regarding the availability of intermediary injunctions to brand owners.

The team’s expertise has continued to be recognised by the industry, from gold tier rankings (WTR 1000) to wins in Managing IP’s EMEA Awards for UK Trademark (Prosecution) Firm of the Year 2021 and UK Copyright Firm of the Year 2021, as well as being shortlisted for UK Trademark (Contentious) Firm of the Year in 2021.

Patents

Wiggin’s contentious patent practice is broad and clients hail from sectors as diverse as software tech, medical devices, pharma, automotive and general engineering. Notable cases run by the Wiggin team include Pozzoli v BDMO, the leading court of appeal case on obviousness.

Designs

Wiggin boasts true specialists in the often-neglected and under-utilised area of design protection and enforcement, and its partners are heavily involved in teaching and examining on designs law and practice for Oxford University’s postgraduate diploma in IP law and practice.

Innovation

Wiggin recognises that to truly understand and service innovation-driven businesses, innovation and technology must be at the heart of the practice. We work closely with Incopro, a business that Wiggin originally co-founded, whose Talisman system provides a monitoring and enforcement service.

Incopro was recently acquired by Corsearch but together we continue to provide clients with a unique, one-stop online brand protection and anti-counterfeiting service.

Get unlimited access to all WTR content