As a major economy with a sophisticated consumer market, South Africa is an important jurisdiction for trade mark law. The country boasts a well-developed legal profession which has connections across Africa, it also serves as a conduit for brand protection throughout the region. This is the view of the World Trademark Review news and industry intelligence service who recently released the reviews and rankings of the leading trade mark professionals in the world for 2018.
In commentary pertaining to Adams & Adams, one of only two gold-tiered firms in South Africa, WTR1000 commentators wrote, “Working masterfully across the IP spectrum, Adams & Adams is widely considered to be a top-tier practice by brand owners and fellow professionals. “Not only the largest team, it is the best for trademarks – there’s no doubt about it. Adams has excellent practitioners who benefit from fantastic systems and structures; as well as a core group of senior experts, it has well-trained younger staff whose work is of a consistently high quality.”
Ten professionals were given individual rankings as well. Of the current firm Chairman, the peer review added that “the business savvy Gérard du Plessis provides level-headed leadership to the civil litigation department.”
Other comments; “Superb strategist Simon Brown provides assured leadership on the non-contentious side, implementing portfolio development programmes seamlessly across Africa. Flanking him is time-served strategist Eugene Honey, who has a flair for prosecution and IP commercialisation. Straddling both sides of the practice is the “absolutely excellent” Darren Olivier, who stands out with his fantastic negotiating abilities and great people skills; his perceptive rights management is informed by an exceptional understanding of international markets. Jenny Pienaar is a valuable ally when contentious matters arise; a courtroom virtuoso, she also sparkles in opposition proceedings and has a particular penchant for domain names. Accomplished enforcer Dale Healy is another key contact for dispute resolution, as is advertising and soft-IP aficionado Kelly Thompson. At the vanguard in the fight against fakes, Steven Yeates has broadened his focus since the recent departure of colleague Suzaan Laing – he now tackles a panoply of trademark spats from his new base in Cape Town. Other leading figures in the firm’s outstanding anti-counterfeiting offering include Lucy Signorelli and Godfrey Budeli.”
Of the reviews, Gérard du Plessis commented, “Recognition from one’s peers and clients in a challenging profession is especially rewarding.”
Prestigious accolades and reviews such as those by WTR1000, Best Lawyers®, IP Stars and Chambers® are based on market leading performance analysis and are strictly quantitative – designed to recognise those firms which are consistently delivering the best results for their clients. Adams & Adams Partner, Mariëtte du Plessis, is recognised by Managing IP in its global list of Top 250 Women in IP. This list recognises female IP practitioners in private practice who have performed exceptionally for their clients and firms in the past year.