UK Trademark Rankings 2024

Stobbs IP

Firm overview:

“Uniquely successful” IP boutique Stobbs has an impressive non-contentious practice with the second most trademarks filed in the UK for 2022 and a roster of high profile clients including McDonalds, Meta, and Nike. “Fantastic at registry work and protection work,” according to peers, Stobbs has filed 3700+ trademark applications in the UK and acted in thousands of opposition and cancellation matters in the last 12 months. Growing from 18 individuals to more than 200 in a decade, Stobbs is seen by both clients and fellow firms as a trailblazer and “juggernaut” for its alternative and cost-effective approach to trademark prosecution.

“Stobbs is truly commercial [and] innovative whilst being extremely competitive on costs. It is a platinum standard for a fraction of the cost,” says a client. High profile brands comment that the firm is at the forefront for emerging technologies within IP and internally has launched new platforms to streamline IP management and provide data analysis on client portfolios. The team assists with online brand enforcement, anti-counterfeiting and domestic seizures resulting in civil damages for clients and on the contentious side, has a team of 25 dedicated to Disputes and Litigation. As examples of the firm's expanding capabilities, Stobbs currently acts for technology company WebStorm before the High Court and for Marks and Spencer in a matter against Aldi to be heard in the Court of Appeal in 2024.

Team overview:

Stobbs’ trademark team, based in five offices across the UK, Netherlands and Germany, comprises both trademark attorneys and lawyers. The firm’s founder, Julius Stobbs is “stunningly brilliant and exceptional”, say peers. Previously a partner at Boult Wade Tennant, Stobbs has deep experience in IP and clients see him as “a strategic leader that thinks outside of the box in terms of resources and tools.” Client-recommended trademark attorney Louise Goodsell focuses on portfolio management and provides “effortless interactions, the advice is clear, concise, pragmatic and commercial.” Ex-Fieldfisher trademark attorney Joel McDonald leads the firm’s sports practice and advises on overall brand strategy, with a special focus on international trademark protection.  Harpreet Dhaliwal is “brilliant and responsive,” says a client, “she is dedicated to our portfolio and is an extension of the team.” Dhaliwal is a trademark attorney advising on worldwide filing strategies, taking on oppositions and cancellations in multiple jurisdictions. Other key members in non-contentious matters include “very practical attorney” Daniel Hardman-Smart.

Paralegal Ian Collier focuses on data and IP. Clients say Collier is “the most proficient specialist we have worked with. We value his care and attention on our portfolio.” Solicitor Chris Hawkes handles trademark and passing off matters with a niche in the music industry, working with artists and record labels and advising on band name disputes. Claire Breheny brings experience in trademark clearance, protection and enforcement work, managing cross border disputes and settlements. Clients say Breheny is a “trusted advisor”, “with deep corporate knowledge” of brand needs.

Key matters:

  • Joel McDonald and Selina Chan assisted renowned whiskey brand Jack Daniel’s in an opposition against “JACK DOYLE THE GORGEOUS GAEL,” trademark registered in the EU. The Stobbs team gathered evidence that the client had a significant reputation as marks JACK and JACK DANIEL’S. The EU Intellectual Property Office agreed with the client that the opposed mark would bring the client’s marks to mind. The result was significant in concluding that Jack Daniel’s has a reputation for the mark ‘JACK’.
  • Stobbs represents UK supermarket chain Marks and Spencer against the discount shop Aldi in an ongoing infringement matter, bringing attention to the need for design registration to protect from lookalikes. The case concerns Aldi’s gold flake gin liqueurs, released in 2021. The Intellectual Property Enterprise Court found the product to have infringed M&S’ registered designs. A decision is due at the Court of Appeal in January, 2024. The Stobbs team is Chris Sleep, Charlotte Peach, Nirmal Trivedy and Sarah Stephens.
  • On behalf of global confectionery company Mars, Stobbs has driven enforcement efforts to seize vapes featuring the SKITTLES trademark in the UK. As part of its investigative efforts, the team has conducted programmes against 25 infringers, and is working with the UK Vaping Industry Association in its lobbying efforts to tackle illegal vapes, and is assisting the Trading Standards and UK Border Force in the detection and seizure of infringing vapes entering the UK. Stobbs achieved a high success rate for the client in its takedown of the infringing Skittles vapes.


7-Eleven, ASOS, Balfour Beatty, Cancer Research UK, Channel 4, Dr. Martens, FIFA, Grandmaster Flash, Instagram, Jack Daniels, Kendall & Kylie Jenner, Mars, McDonalds, Meta, Nike, O2, Siemens AG, Snap Inc, Tik Tok, WhatsApp

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