People and places
The Lebanese legal market is active, but has been slowed by the 2020 Port of Beirut blast and the impacts of Covid-19. Most law firms in Beirut are focussed on transactions and dispute resolution, as well as projects and real estate, but there are a few IP specialists in the city, and a number of full-service firms that offer advice on IP and IP-adjacent matters. A number of regional law firms also have a presence in Beirut.
Ali Yamout is the IP portfolio manager in the Lebanon office of Abu-Ghazaleh Intellectual Property (AGIP), a regional IP firm with its roots in Kuwait, and its current headquarters in Jordan. The firm has been involved in revising and drafting important IP laws and regulations in at least half a dozen Arab countries, including the United Arab Emirates. The firm has offices spread across more than 30 predominantly Muslim jurisdictions, as well as in China, India and Russia, each with their own significant Muslim minority populations.
Alem & Associates delivers advice for IP strategies, including registration, promotion, transfer and licensing of IP rights. Partner Leila Laila is regional head of franchising, media and entertainment and IP. She advises on a wide range of high-end media and entertainment transactions, as well as those relating to franchising, licensing, broadcasting, television and motion picture production, merchandising, product placement, literary options, talent engagements, endorsements and others. The firm’s Beirut office is home to more than 40 practitioners and support staff.
Badri and Salim El Meouchi was founded in Beirut in the 1880s. Partner Elie El Feghali heads the firm’s litigation practice group; he specializes in IP, criminal and employment law. In 2007, the firm opened an office in Doha’s Qatar Financial Centre (QFC) in order to better service clients from the GCC, India and Asia.
Cedar White Bradley (CWB) is an IP consultancy providing IP services in 22 different jurisdictions between the Middle East and North Africa, managing and protecting IP rights across industries including oil and gas, media, technology, transportation, entertainment, consumer electronics, tobacco, pharmaceuticals, confectionary, FMCG, property development, luxury fashion and cosmetics.
Dentons operates in Beirut in association with Chedid Law Offices. Partner Elias Chedid focuses on M&A, private equity, TMT, international arbitration, energy and government and regulatory work.
Doha-based JAH & Co. IP has more than 20 years of experience in the Middle East and Africa, advising clients of all sizes, from small businesses to Fortune 100 companies on a plethora of IP matters. “Intellectual property is among the most important assets of every enterprise,” says firm CEO Jehad Ali Hasan. “With the globalization of the world economy and commerce, the Middle East and Arab world with its young population and resources contributes significantly towards it.”
Obeid & Partners advises companies on the negotiation, strategy, preparation, administration and analysis of assignment contracts as well as intellectual property right licenses, franchises, know-how and technology transfers and confidential information. Nayla Comair-Obeid leads the firm from Beirut, where she also leads the firm’s dispute resolution practice. IP, licensing and telecommunications are among her expertise.
Amal Abdallah is country manager at regional firm Saba & Co. Intellectual Property, also known as Saba IP, in Doha. Abdallah’s practice focuses on providing IP prosecution, enforcement and anti-counterfeiting services to local, regional and international brand owners. The firm, as one of the region’s largest IP-focussed practices, handles the gamut of IP matters. The firm’s offices stretch from the Middle East to Central Asia and throughout much of Africa.
Sader & Associates was founded in 2003 as an IP firm; it has since expanded its practice areas to include corporation, commercial, litigation, international law, information technology, entertainment, real estate, environmental law and others. Managing partner and co-founder Rany J. Sader has extensive experience in representing clients in industries including IT, pharmaceuticals, food and beverage, FMCG, high fashion, cosmetics, media, entertainment, advertising, consumer protection and others. Partner Patricia J. Seaiby is head of conflict and dispute resolution; partner Nisrine W. El Haddad heads the IP department.
United Trademark & Patent Services is a top-notch regional law firm which offers the full realm of intellectual property services and domain name services. The firm is led by the well-known Yawar Irfan Khan, Hasan Irfan Khan and Maria Farrukh Irfan Khan. In addition to Beirut, the firm has offices in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Oman, Lebanon, Jordan and Bahrain, as well as in parts of North Africa and South Asia.