Potter Clarkson amongst ‘most active law firms’ in 2016 according to European patent figures

20 February 2017

The latest statistics from the European Patent Office, which reveal a detailed picture of patent activity during 2016, show significant growth in grants, with Potter Clarkson among the top 20 law firms - fourth in the UK - responsible for securing this increased number of patents.

According to analysis from Anaqua, US patents grew by about 2.4%, while the EPO published 98,547 B patents – a significant 40% leap on the previous year and (according to Anaqua) largely attributable to weakening patent protection in the US.  Anaqua point out that the America Invents Act (AIA) and the implications of the ruling in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank International have seen innovative corporations turn their attentions to jurisdictions where they can be confident of greater protection.  However, we at Potter Clarkson think that the recent rise in EPO granted patents is more attributable to the measures that the EPO has taken to accelerate the examination of pending applications.

Another factor driving this trend is the increasingly sophisticated approach to IP in China, with grants up 80% on 2015 – followed by the US (49%) and Japan 48%.
Commenting on the statistics, Andrew Argyle, Practice Director at Potter Clarkson said:
“2016 was certainly an active year for the EPO and, as a firm, we are delighted to be at the forefront of this busy period. In the year ahead, we expect to see continued demand coming from China and the US, both of whom recognise the commercial benefits of seeking protection for their innovations in Europe and want the peace of mind they are working with specialist and experienced patent attorneys.”

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