Vietnam's IP Experts 2020
31 August 2020
Vietnam has taken a unique path towards its role as an up-and-coming player in the tech – and, by extension, intellectual property – world.
Two decades ago, when Vietnam’s streets were still largely choked by bicycles and crumbling colonial buildings, its leaders understood that the country’s future depended upon technological development. They turned to Japan, and by 2001, says software outsourcing company Saigon Technology, some 30 software development companies were operating in Vietnam, working for companies including Bayer, BP, Cisco, NTT and Sony, among many others.
Thanh (Bruce) Pham, CEO of Saigon Technology, says on the firm’s website that Vietnamese companies started out handling simple projects, such as low-value coding or testing. “They now can make product designs and research, which can bring higher value,” he says, suggesting that Vietnamese tech companies are quite capable of overtaking India, China and other players in the tech fields.
At the same time, Vietnam’s economy has developed quickly, bringing international brands and products even to some of the country’s more provincial cities. This quickly rising tide of technology, business and investment has created a bonanza for lawyers, including intellectual property lawyers.
With this growing interest in Vietnam, we turned to IP professionals in the region in order to understand better what clients need today. Asia IP asked a large number of professionals – mostly in-house counsel and corporate legal managers – what they were looking for from their legal service providers. From their answers, we have compiled our list of 50 Vietnam IP Experts, those lawyers who understand just what their clients need and are able to provide them with the best practical advice.
Today’s clients are looking for more than just a degree from a top-notch university and a couple of decades of practice. In order to be an outstanding provider of intellectual property advice, a lawyer must also be capable of understanding how intellectual property impacts the rest of his client’s business, and be able to provide practical, real-world, business-savvy advice. She must be able to provide sound advice on the current law, but also needs to be able to understand coming trends which are likely to impact her client’s business.
Unlike days past when she might have played just a bit role, today’s IP Expert is every bit a full-fledged team member.
As our list of Vietnam’s IP Experts began to emerge, we were reminded of the growth of home-grown Vietnamese law firms; of the 29 firms on the list, most of them can trace their roots to Vietnamese founders.
Big regional laws firms still do well in Vietnam. Tilleke & Gibbins landed six different lawyers on the list; Baker McKenzie, which operates in Vietnam as BMVN International, and Rouse had four a piece. Schmitt & Orlov, Hogan Lovells, Rajah & Tann LCT Lawyers and RHTLaw Asia Vietnam each had a lawyer on the list.
Local firms also did well, including Bizconsult (two lawyers), D&N International (three), Indochine Counsel (two), Lê & Lê (one), Pham & Associates (two), Trung Thuc JSC (two) and Vision & Associates (four).
Most of the lawyers named to our list have multiple practice specialties. Many of them are litigators, while others concentrate on prosecution work or provide strategic advice.
All of them have something in common: they are experts in their fields and, in one way or another, they provide extra value for their clients. They are Asia IP’s Vietnam IP Experts.
Vietnam’s IP Experts is based solely on independent editorial research conducted by Asia IP. As part of this project, we turned to thousands of in-house counsel in Vietnam, Asia and elsewhere and around the world, as well as Vietnam-focused partners at international law firms, and asked them to nominate private-practice lawyers including foreign legal consultants, advisers and counsel.
The final list reflects the nominations received combined with the input of editorial team at Asia IP, which has more than 40 years of collective experience in researching and understanding Vietnam’s legal market.
All private practice intellectual property lawyers in Vietnam were eligible for inclusion in the nominations process; there were no fees or any other requirements for inclusion in the process.
The names of our 50 IP Experts are published here. Each IP Expert was given the opportunity to include their biography and contact details in print and on our website, for which a fee was charged.