To better serve high technology and innovation-driven clients, Froriep Legal AG and Rentsch Partner AG, two of Switzerland’s leading legal services firms, have recently joined forces.

“We were named Swiss Law Firm of the Year at The Lawyer European Awards in 2018 and today, we feel invigorated by our cooperation with Rentsch Partner,” said Nicola Benz, Froriep’s managing partner. “We have developed a ‘disruptive technologies’ practice group as part of our full-service approach and we have significantly increased our ratio of female partners.”

Rentsch Partner is one of the leading intellectual property (IP) law firms in Switzerland with experts both in IP prosecution and litigation; a rare quality in the field. Last year, the firm was named Switzerland Patent Contentious Firm of the Year by London-based journal Managing Intellectual Property.

“We are strong in delivering solutions to clients active in mechanical and electrical engineering and chemistry and also those in pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, software and computer technology,” said Jacobus Sonderhoff, head of Rentsch Partner’s Japan Desk. “As most of our clients are export-oriented, international patent applications are regularly filed, particularly for Japan. On the other hand, we assist Japanese firms not only with Swiss, but also European intellectual property rights.” 

Today, Switzerland is recognized as having one of the highest numbers of patents and other IP rights per capita.

“Together with Swiss SMEs (small- and medium-sized enterprises) and ETH (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich) affiliated institutes, we already operate in a very innovation-driven economy and receive regular inquiries
regarding IP applications, recently also relating to blockchain technologies,” said Sonderhoff. “With the upcoming Patent Box regime, taxes on IP-generated revenue would be reduced by up to 90 percent, and this will be bolstered further by the R&D (research and development) super tax deduction.”

“There is increased awareness of distributed ledger technology,” said Benz. “Innovative technologies are becoming commonplace in the banking and financial services, property and real estate, supply chain management and logistics industries. We are seeing Japanese clients come to Switzerland to establish a European presence for their blockchain business projects.”

From technology and innovation to quality, precision and service, Benz and Sonderhoff both agree that the Swiss and the Japanese share many common characteristics. 

“In terms of our legal practices, our shared goal is to stay ahead of the curve regarding new technologies,” said Benz. 

“We will continue to take a leading position regarding the advice we provide clients relating to the legal implications of the new technologies we see entering the global economy.”