The Patents and Technologies team consists of lawyers, industrial property advisers and European patent attorneys, a large number of whom have dual legal and technical qualifications.
This unique dual expertise, combined with a thorough knowledge of industry and a proven practice record in the courts, the EPO and the French INPI, enables us to formulate the best contentious, contractual and development strategies to provide a bespoke response to all our clients’ needs and interests at optimal cost.
The diversity of our training and experience enables us to work in all areas of technical expertise: chemicals, pharmaceuticals, biochemicals, biotechnology, engineering, telecoms, new technologies, computer-implemented inventions, etc.
We are used to working in close collaboration with the firm’s other teams and can provide original solutions in the most complex cases.
We can assist you at all the pre-contentious and contentious stages of invalidity and infringement actions up to and including a final decision, as well as in any negotiations to achieve an amicable solution.
With our proven experience in patent law, we can develop the best strategy having regard to the risk/benefit to you, and, if necessary, can make tactical and creative use of all the potential offered by related litigation (before civil, commercial and administrative courts, employment tribunals, the EPO, the INPI, etc.), working closely, whenever necessary, with the firm’s other teams.
Our comprehensive experience allows us to respond immediately in the most complex cases (interim prohibition, declaration of non-infringement, claim to ownership of an invention, arbitration, mediation, FRAND litigation, coordination of pan-European litigation, etc.).
We have comprehensive expertise in litigation before the EPO and the INPI (oppositions and appeals, third-party observations and intervention of the assumed infringer before the EPO, limitations, monitoring of competitors’ patent applications and provisional protections, etc.).
Since we do not regard oppositions as mere extensions of the review procedure but as litigation in their own right, we are familiar with the use of all available litigation tools, and in particular procedural rules and technical witnesses and experts.
Our opposition cases before the EPO very frequently have ramifications in litigation before domestic courts, and our advisers and European patent attorneys – the majority of whom are also lawyers – can develop made-to-measure strategies that take these domestic aspects into account.
Drawing on our EPO expertise, we have already handled the new opposition procedure before the INPI, putting our civil procedure practice to good use to anticipate the appeal stage before the Court of Appeal.
Our lawyers and European patent attorneys are involved on a daily basis in litigation before domestic courts and the EPO, and the vast majority of them have professional experience with businesses, particularly through secondment assignments. This practical knowledge of both litigation and industry gives them the necessary depth of knowledge:
We are conscious of what is at stake financially for our clients and in order to make the best use of their added value, we use highly efficient subcontractors for the more administrative aspects of cases (annual payments, regional phase entry, etc.), while keeping the client fully informed.
Due to our broad expertise in the negotiation and drafting of contracts in the field of industrial property, acquired through working on many cases and through contact with our clients – particularly during secondment assignments – we can provide assistance with contracts of all kinds: assignments, licenses (including FRAND licenses), co-ownership agreements, confidentiality, collaboration, co-development, R&D, pledges, service agreements and settlements.
Our experience of industrial property disputes (including FRAND arbitrations and litigation) allows us to provide our clients with strategic advice regarding appraisal of their patents, the establishment of licensing policies, and policies to combat infringements (identification of infringers and their distributors, sending of formal notices, negotiation of agreements, etc.).
Our team is one of the major players in patent litigation concerning medicines and medical devices.
Our lawyers, advisers and European patent attorneys are experts in pharmaceutical industry issues and in the last few years we have acted in some of this sector’s most important cases.
This diverse experience (in small molecules, biological products, formulas, medical devices, secondary therapeutic applications, etc.), combined with thorough knowledge of the regulations concerning medicines and medical devices and close collaboration with the firm’s Public and Regulatory team, makes us highly effective in dealing with the most complex subjects, both in an advisory and contentious capacity:
Our team has proven expertise in the law concerning employee inventions, acquired over years of practice in a large number of cases.
We can assist you with all your problems in this area: setting up compensation packages, appearing before the CNIS and the courts, advising on the assessment of additional remuneration or fair price, and negotiating and drafting settlement agreements.
Whenever a case requires it, we develop original, cross-disciplinary strategies in close collaboration with the firm’s Employment team, ensuring that the right procedural decisions are made before the employment tribunal or the court in accordance with the client’s interests.
The diversity of our team members’ scientific training, their detailed knowledge of technology sectors and their practice in these areas before domestic courts and the EPO has enabled them, together with the firm’s Litigation team, to develop solid know-how in the field of industrial risks, civil professional and product liability, and insurance:
We firmly believe that experience sharing stimulates individual and collective talents, and we pool our expertise through initiatives and training on our premises, at our clients’ premises and at professional associations, training organizations and universities (CEIPI, EFB, IEEPI, Polytechnic University of Milan, marking of the EQE, CentraleSupelec, ENSTA, Ponts ParisTech, C5, Life Science Patent Network, MIP, INPI, etc.).
Since we always make it a priority to adapt to the audience concerned (lawyers, engineers, works councils, workforces, students, etc.), to achieve the objectives set and to illustrate what we have to say with concrete examples taken from our practice, we provide a great variety of training: raising awareness or more in-depth work concerning industrial property issues, patent and related litigation (unfair competition, plagiarism, business secrecy), seizure in infringement cases, and negotiation and drafting of contracts.
Since 2018, we have organized annual patent workshops at our offices, where industrial property practitioners and professionals from related sectors meet for a productive exchange of experiences in an informal atmosphere.
August Debouzy has established itself as one of the leading law firms in the French patent litigation scene thanks to the leadership of Grégoire Desrousseaux and François Pochart, both of whom are qualified as patent attorneys and lawyers. Both partners have a background in engineering but Pochart has carved out a patent practice in the pharmaceutical sector while Desrousseaux handles disputes in a range of technical fields, including electronics and mechanics. The firm is also recommended for patent office proceedings and IP transactions.
“Exceptional team advising on all aspects of IP cases. Notable expertise in patent issues before the French courts and the European Patent Office, in addition to experience in trademarks and unfair competition. Recent mandates also include handling copyright infringement cases. Instructed by an array of international names from the pharmaceutical and fashion industries. Also handles IP issues arising in the telecommunications and transport sectors.”
Intellectual Property: Grégoire Desrousseaux
Intellectual Property: François Pochart
Pharma/Life Sciences: François Pochart
“François Pochart frequently acts for major pharma and energy corporates on a variety of French and cross-border patent matters. Impressed clients report: "He is an excellent strategist and litigation advocate with a strong grasp of underlying technical issues."
“Grégoire Desrousseaux maintains his position as a leading practitioner in the French IP market, as well as in cross-border mandates. He demonstrates impressive skill in contentious matters, chiefly patent infringement proceedings and appeals as well as unfair competition and copyright disputes. Impressed sources say: "He is very technically competent and is an excellent communicator."
Intellectual Property: Grégoire Desrousseaux
Intellectual Property: François Pochart
"A standout independent outfit on the French market, August Debouzy demonstrates exceptional capability when prosecuting patents, bringing contentious matters to a successful close and dispensing strategic advice. This versatility is reflected in positions on all three tables in the rankings. Despite its relatively small size, it makes light work of multinational proceedings, earning it the loyalty of industry titans such as Teva, Orange and Total. One enthusiastic client declares: “In short, there is no better patent attorney or patent law firm in the whole of Europe than them. I learned that I needed August Debouzy on my side. I definitely did not want them to be on the other side of the table.” François Pochart and Grégoire Desrousseaux are the dynamic duo at the heart of the practice. Pochart’s guidance on regulatory issues, supplementary protection certificates (SPCs) and plant protection products is always on point; while Desrousseaux benefits from qualifications in both law and engineering. “There is no doubt of Grégoire’s extraordinary intelligence. However, what makes him truly stand out without equal is his fierce application of that intelligence and subject-matter expertise to achieving clients’ business objectives. He does not hesitate to take measured risks in the pursuit of total victory.” “He is a brilliant professional, able to handle a huge amount of data in a very short period of time and to extract itsessence.”"
Litigation : Grégoire Desrousseaux
Litigation : François Pochart
Transactions: François Pochart
Transactions: Grégoire Desrousseaux
Prosecution: François Pochart
"August Debouzy est réputé pour sa forte expertise de contentieux de brevets au service des entreprises pharmaceutiques. Le cabinet dispose d’une « large équipe de professionnels des brevets », en capacité d’également fournir une assistance non contentieuse, notamment pour la rédaction des demandes de brevets. Le cabinet a favorablement représenté Gaztransport & Technigaz dans un recours en opposition porté devant l'Office Européen des Brevets dans une affaire complexe et de dimension internationale dont les montants en jeu s’élevaient à 70 millions d'euros. La pratique est codirigée par Grégoire Desrousseaux et François Pochart qui sont deux « remarquables professionnels, aux plans technique et juridique ». Sont également recommandés ; les counsels Lionel Martin et Mathilde Rauline, ainsi que le collaborateur senior Martin Brion. L'équipe a récemment été renforcée par l'arrivée de Philippe Lanet (counsel) en provenance de Technicolor. Counsel Loïc Lemercier a rejoint Clifford Chance en octobre 2019. "
‘Dans une affaire de violation de brevet qui s’est finie par une victoire à la Cour Suprême, l’un des facteurs de réussite a été le dévouement dont Grégoire Desrousseaux et sa petite équipe ont fait preuve.’
‘Grégoire Desrousseaux fait preuve d’une créativité et d’une proactivité remarquables. Il garde tous les détails en tête dans ses évaluations, et ses comptes-rendus sont excellents. Ceci, ainsi que le dévouement de toute l’équipe, a finalement mené à notre réussite.’
‘Grande équipe de professionnels de brevets, très qualifiée d’un point de vue technique et juridique.’
‘Grégoire Desrousseaux et François Pochart sont des professionnels remarquables alliant compétences techniques et juridiques.’
Patents: François Pochart
Healthcare and LifeSciences: François Pochart
Industry focus: Healthcare and life sciences
"The IP practice of this national full-service firm is among the market leaders in patent litigation. August Debouzy boasts a large number of dual-qualified lawyers, allowing it to handle both French proceedings and the associated EPO proceedings for its clients. This effective strategy as a one-stop shop combined with in-depth technical understanding are what impress clients. (…), this is one of the few teams with an impressive track record in high-stakes cases, such as Peugeot Citroen Automobiles against NPE Papst Licensing. Practice head Grégoire Desrousseaux is one of the most experienced litigators with a deep technical understanding of mobile communications patents. He successfully litigated this year, for example, for Asus in a suit against Philips regarding graphical user interfaces, as well as for Huawei against Intellectual Ventures over SEPs. The second, also dual-qualified partner, François Pochart, is renowned for his in-depth pharma sector expertise. He conducted the proceedings for Fresenius Kabi against Amgen concerning Humira, which were much observed across Europe".
"The leading patents team has strong client contacts, partly because both dual-qualified partners frequently represent their clients before both the national French courts and the EPO. If the UPC arrives, this experience will be a trump card that few European firms can play. This makes August Debouzy an interesting partner for lots of international firms, especially those with a similar full-service approach".
Litigation: Lawyers France
Patent law firm of the year
Managing IP’s EMEA Awards
French Patent Contentious firm of the year
• Grégoire Desrousseaux :
Life Sciences - Patent Litigation (global) ;
Life Sciences - Patents (global et France)
• François Pochart :
Life Sciences - Patent Litigation (global) ;
Patent Agent & Attorneys (global) ;
Life Sciences - Patent Attorneys (France)
Patents – Litigation
Patents litigation in pharma, biotechs and life sciences