The Power of Intellectual Property Amplified by a General Practice Platform

14 February 2023 Publication
Author(s): Jeffrey S. Gundersen Christopher J. McKenna

IP With GP Matters! Foley & Lardner LLP’s large intellectual property (IP) practice within a general practice (GP) platform is unique among its peers. From an IP perspective, our firm has a department that is the equivalent in scale and strength to any of the largest IP boutiques in the world. Foley is a proud recipient of a top four ranking among all law firms in total U.S. utility patents issued, along with top rankings in areas important to the energy, health care and life sciences, innovative technology, and manufacturing sectors.

Foley IP on a General Practice Platform

A key distinction between Foley and many of the other ranked law firms on the same list is that Foley is the top GP firm. With Foley, not only do clients get the scale and strength of a large IP boutique, but they also get the synergy from integration with the rest of the services the Foley platform has to offer. Other GP firms do have IP practices, but most do not have the same combination of scale, strength, diversity, and integration as Foley’s IP practice. Foley’s strategic pillars of one team, sector focus, and client lens approach to client engagements further make the integration of Foley’s IP with a GP platform even more powerful.

Competitive Differentiator. Foley has over 1,100 attorneys across twenty-five offices and three departments of business law, litigation, and intellectual property. It is important to note that our IP department is one of the three departments in the firm’s organizational hierarchy and sits side by side with the other large departments of business law and litigation. The chair of the intellectual property department, along with the business law and litigation department chairs, report directly to the CEO of the firm. Most GP law firms do not have the IP department postured in this manner. This is a testament to the value, scale, and importance of IP to Foley and its clients.

One Team. Foley’s one team approach allows us to not only serve nearly all of our client’s needs, but do so in a flexible and integrated manner. This is due to the firm’s deep bench of attorneys across many different areas including M&A, antitrust, commercial litigation, compliance, regulatory, tax, public affairs, employment law, and more that can be called upon based on client needs. With the range offered by Foley’s IP department, the firm is able to provide patent counselors across technologies and sciences from A-Z: trademark, copyright, and advertising assistance, IP litigation, technology transactions, licensing, cybersecurity, and data privacy consultation. The IP team not only serves many of the world’s leading companies in technology and science, but also works in collaboration with the firm’s business law and litigation departments to provide comprehensive services that take into account the impact of intellectual property on the client’s business objectives.

As an example, in the context of a strategic transaction, Foley can select from among its 220+ IP lawyers and patent agents to identify the team members with the right experience and technology background to work alongside our business lawyers, litigators, and others to provide tailored counseling for the entire spectrum of legal and business aspects of the transaction.

As IP law is a complex area, having a team of experienced and knowledgeable professionals to handle IP-related matters is essential for any firm that wants to remain competitive and protect their clients’ interests.

Client Lens. One of Foley’s strategic pillars is having a client lens. That is, addressing our clients’ business challenges from their viewpoints while providing legal counseling and services. Foley’s lawyers are more than trusted legal advisors, they are business advisors who counsel and guide clients through their challenges. Within a GP platform, Foley’s IP lawyers become more client lens aware than our competitors as they learn how IP impacts our clients’ business interests. Context matters. This holistic approach to IP counseling helps ensure that Foley’s clients’ needs and interests are properly addressed.

Sector Solutions. Foley’s sector approach engages clients with cross-practice teams of attorneys who are situationally fluent in the business challenges our clients face and will face in the energy, health care and life sciences, innovative technology, and manufacturing sectors. Foley’s sectors are the framework through which Foley delivers top legal talent, using innovative services to solve business problems. Foley’s IP practice is a core and integral part of Foley’s sectors as our IP lawyers and patent agents have a deep understanding of the technology and science underlying our clients’ products and services. This enables our sector teams to understand not only the business and legal challenges of our clients, but also the technology and science forming an important part of the client lens. In fact, Foley’s IP department is not only a top four patent filer but also a top filer for the technology and science inventions driving the energy, health care and life sciences, innovative technology, and manufacturing sectors. This interdisciplinary approach to IP law allows the firm to provide clients with the full range of services needed to protect their intellectual property rights and interests.

If you are interested in how Foley’s one team, client lens, and sector platform approach to IP services can help protect, leverage, and navigate your IP interests in the context of your business, please contact any member of our IP leadership team to learn more.