Beijing and HK groups form giant East IP to tap growth

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Beijing Hong Kong IP groups Zhong Lun Law Firm
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A trio of intellectual property groups in Beijing and Hong Kong have joined forces, incorporating a 36-strong team from Zhong Lun Law Firm, to establish an IP giant providing a comprehensive range of services across seven cities.

The tie-up involves the integration of East IP and East IP Law Firm, primarily established by Gao Lulin, the former director of the China National Intellectual Property Administration, with the Hong Kong-based IP firm, SIPS.

With more than 430 professionals and staff, the new group will operate under the Chinese name, 亿思知识产权代理有限公司, and the English name, East IP. The offices are located in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hong Kong.

Joe Simone, a former partner at Baker McKenzie, founded SIPS in 2012. Its primary focus is trademark prosecution, IP investigations, and enforcement. After 12 years of development, it has grown to more than 90 legal professionals and staff, including five partners – Dan Plane, Helen Tang, Joann Chan, Joshua Miller and Mai Lin.

Simone will serve as co-chair with Li Xiaodong, the managing director of the original East IP.

Members of the IP team, led by former Zhong Lun trademark veteran Jimmy Huang, have been joining East IP in stages since 1 April. This talented team includes 5 partners. Huang has taken on the role of chair of the trademark department after joining East IP.

As part of the collaboration, Zhang Yan will head the East IP Law Firm as a managing partner.

China’s IP sector has experienced rapid growth in recent years. The World Intellectual Property Organisation’s data released in March revealed that China has emerged as the leading source of international patent applications in 2023. However, the latest official figures from China indicate a 29% decline in trademark registrations last year.

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