Helen Wakerley

Partner at Reddie & Grose LLP
Ranked in United Kingdom: England
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

Silver - Individuals: prosecution and strategy

A prime pick for technology and financial services companies, as well as innovators from all walks of life, Reddie & Grose is a much-admired European IP group which applies a creative touch to strategic portfolio development and contentious work. The set often facilitates quick resolutions thanks to the laser business focus and pragmatism that characterise its approach. A superb line-up of professionals is led by partners Helen Wakerley, Alice Findlay and Tom Sharman, each of whom is enthusiastically endorsed. “One of the best trademark attorneys in London, Helen is an important business partner who offers straightforward opinions and advice, and is always ready to go the extra mile to support her clients.” “She consistently exhibits great ingenuity in avoiding conflicts and resolving any that do arise, and is excellent at brainstorming problems.” She has been advising US-based Tomy International on the adoption of new brands. Firm chair Findlay has a deep tactical playbook which helps her to get brand owners through difficult disputes unscathed. Sources call her “well prepared, proactive, sensible, profoundly knowledge about the law and commercially astute”. Leveraging a far-reaching network of contacts, Sharman keeps clients’ brands in the best of health internationally: “Tom understands American companies and is super-responsive and practical.”

Helen Wakerley's Profile

Helen Wakerley is responsible for the trademark portfolios of clients in many sectors, with particular experience in the automotive industry. She also represents clients in the gifts and toys sector, as well as celebrities looking to protect their business interests and prevent misuse of their names and brands.

Ms Wakerley’s experience ranges from clearing marks for use, through to preparing worldwide filing programmes and dealing with inter partes issues pre and post-registration. She has significant expertise in prosecuting applications, taking the difficult ones to hearings and appeals. She has dealt extensively with settlement agreements, consent and co-existence arrangements. Her approach is responsive, supportive and creative, offering advice which is praised for its client-focused angle. She handles contentious proceedings in a way to avoid escalation where possible, while bringing in the best outcome for the client. Clients welcome her pragmatic approach to trademark opposition proceedings in particular.

Comments from her clients include: “Helen takes a common-sense approach to matters; she is great at analysis and strategy, but cuts right to the point. She has an excellent understanding of the UK and European trademark systems and is down to earth and enthusiastic”; and “her tenacity and smarts are secret weapons in resolving potential conflicts”.

Firm Profile

Reddie & Grose has a modern innovative team who know and understand brands. We recognise the importance of protecting a brand, regardless of the size of the business or the market in which it operates.

We also understand the need for business-facing advice, adaptive strategies and pragmatic solutions. We base our success on the quality of advice we offer, the problems and issues we overcome and resolve for our clients, our ideas for safeguarding every aspect of a business’s brand and the solid relationships we develop with our clients.

Our expertise in creating and implementing global branding search and protection programmes means that we know and understand the trademark system worldwide. We know which countries are more expensive, adopt stricter procedures or commonly pose objections, and we have the ability to anticipate hurdles and advise on how to tackle and overcome them at any stage of the process. We know that business needs will vary over time, so we regularly review our clients’ portfolios to discuss the adequacy and robustness of the protection.

As with any business operation, conflicts and disputes arise and this is often where a protected brand really serves its purpose. We act and advise on both sides of the fence: those enforcing their IP rights and those defending against complaints. We are not afraid to be honest with our clients about their position, the level of risk and their chances of success. We immediately get on board and support, hoping for a swift resolution of the issues without unmerited escalation. We are recognised for our results in trademark opposition cases, in particular, which do not over-stretch our clients’ budgets. Sometimes a conflict cannot be resolved, and we need input from the IP offices or courts to decide. In those instances, we leave no stone unturned and will present our client’s strongest and most persuasive case. We have experience working with individuals, new businesses, large corporations and some of the world’s most recognised brands. We utilise all of this experience and, as a result, we have developed a strong, successful practice.

As a European IP group, we are set up to continue to represent our clients in all of their European IP matters after Brexit through our offices in the United Kingdom, in Munich and The Hague. Our dedicated Brexit team has been monitoring all developments since 2016 and we are very well placed to advise as to how the post-Brexit landscape will affect our clients’ IP rights in both the United Kingdom and European Union.

Between us, we have the knowledge, expertise, skills and personal interests across nearly every industry sector, including in particular the automotive, fashion, technology, sports, finance, recruitment, fast-moving consumer goods and food and drink sectors. If it is an industry sector we do not know much about, we learn quickly. We make it our business to know and understand our client’s business. It is important to us that we provide the right team for each of our clients and we enjoy great working relationships.

Our clients 

  • A global automotive manufacturer
  • A multinational asset management company
  • A global telecommunications company
  • A company of leading household brands in hygiene and personal care products
  • A multinational investment bank
  • A leading UK recruitment company
  • A range of organisations, teams and businesses in the sports industry
  • High-profile names and celebrities and their associated brands

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