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Brinks Gilson & Lione Opens Office in Shenzhen, China, Becoming First Non-Chinese Law Firm with Office in the High-Technology Hub
Chicago-based IP Law Boutique welcomed Xilin Jiang, Director General of the Bureau of Justice in Shenzhen Municipality, to the office's opening ceremonies
December 20, 2017

CHICAGO—Brinks Gilson & Lione, one of the largest intellectual property law firms in the United States, formally launched its office in Shenzhen, Guangdong Province, People's Republic of China, on 1 December 2017. Xilin Jiang, Director General of the Bureau of Justice in Shenzhen Municipality, made remarks at the opening ceremony to Brinks' attorneys, their colleagues, clients, and other members of Shenzhen’s high tech community.

"We were honored that Director General Jiang joined us at our new office," said James R. Sobieraj, Brinks president at the time of the office opening. “We are also honored to be the first foreign law firm with an office in in Shenzhen and the Pearl River Delta area. We stand ready to provide important counsel about US IP matters to clients in this region, which is one of the world’s most vibrant economic and business communities.”

Since the Chinese government established it as a Special Economic Zone in 1980, Shenzhen has become known as “China’s Silicon Valley,” with a population of more than 20 million. The area’s economy features world-class technological innovation and continues to experience tremendous growth.

The new office is the first Brinks has opened outside of the United States. The firm was granted approval from China’s Ministry of Justice in August 2017.

"We very much look forward to offering advice and guidance to Chinese-domiciled entities on the intellectual property laws of the US, and to helping them protect their IP," said Gustavo Siller, Brinks president, who spearheaded efforts to open the office and attended the opening event. “We know we will serve a key role protecting the innovations of Chinese companies and defending them against assertions of infringement in the United States.”

Brinks shareholder Harold V. Johnson, who lives in Shenzhen and is the office’s managing shareholder, also attended the opening.

"Guangdong Province offers remarkable opportunities, and we are very pleased to be the pioneering US law firm in this truly impressive city," Johnson said. "This is a great day for our firm, not only formally opening our first office outside the US, but being the very first US law firm to open an office in Shenzhen. Brinks advises Chinese clients that export to the US about US intellectual property laws, helping them protect their innovations and defending against allegations of infringement.”

Johnson has more than three decades of experience in the practice of IP law and has extensive experience in litigation in US federal district courts, in proceedings at the US International Trade Commission (ITC), and in post-grant review proceedings at the US Patent and Trademark Office. He is joined in Shenzhen by Fei Hu, a Chinese native and a graduate of the University of Toledo College of Law. Hu was most recently senior legal counsel for chipmaker ARM Ltd., a leader in the field of processors for mobile phones and tablet computers. He previously was senior legal counsel to Huawei Technologies, the multinational networking and telecommunications equipment and services company headquartered in Shenzhen. Before that, he was corporate legal counsel to Tencent.

Johnson and Hu will be joined on a rotating basis by Siller and fellow Brinks attorneys Yuezhong Feng, and Lyle Vander Schaaf, all of whom represent Chinese clients. Brinks plans to hire local Chinese technical and administrative personnel to staff the office.

Brinks has represented Chinese companies in patent infringement actions in US district courts and before the ITC. The firm successfully defended a major Chinese telecommunications company in four ITC actions, and successfully represented another Chinese enterprise in its first abbreviated new drug application (ANDA) under the Hatch-Waxman Act. Brinks has also represented Chinese clients in litigations in district courts in the District of Delaware, the Northern District of California, the Eastern District of Texas, and the Northern District of Illinois.

The firm’s Shenzhen office is located in SCC Center Section B, Number 9 Wenxinsan Rd., Suite 3417, Nanshan District, in Shenzhen.

Photo 1 (from Left to Right)

Jeff Catalano, Songqing Xiong, Director of Law Firm Division, Bureau of Justice Shenzhen Municipality, Jianfeng Lin, Director-General, Bureau of Justice Nanshan District, Shenzhen Municipality, Gus Siller, Jim Sobieraj, Xilin Jiang, Director-General, Bureau of Justice Shenzhen Municipality, Harry Johnson, Yuezhong Feng, Fei Hu, Fei Li, President of CIPRUN, Yang (Carol) Luo

Photo 2

Xilin Jiang, Director-General, Bureau of Justice Shenzhen Municipality

Brinks Gilson & Lione

Celebrating its centennial year in 2017, Brinks Gilson & Lione is one of the largest intellectual property law firms in the US, and helps clients around the world to protect and enforce their intellectual property rights. Brinks Gilson & Lione’s more than 130 lawyers, patent agents and scientific advisors assist clients in all aspects of patent, trademark, unfair competition, trade secret, and copyright law. Brinks attorneys provide informed counsel with respect to innovations in a range of complex and valuable technologies, including pharmaceuticals, chemicals, bioengineering, industrial manufacturing, electronics and software, and medical devices. More information is at www.brinksgilson.com.