• IP offices and associations react to António Campinos move to EPO
  • Slovakian IPO president praises the future vision Campinos has for EPO
  • MARQUES hopes his successor brings “consistency and continuity”

It was announced yesterday that António Campinos, executive director of the EUIPO, will soon be moving from Alicante to Munich to take up the presidency of the European Patent Office (EPO). We reached out to national IP offices with the European Union, as well as some key trademark associations, for their reaction. To date, the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. There is also consensus on the need for his successor to provide consistency and continuity at the EUIPO.

As we noted in our coverage, Campinos will be replacing current EPO president Benoît Battistelli when his term in office comes to an end on June 30 2018. It will bring to an end an eight year stint at the EUIPO, and a period of great change at the office; he led a transformation of the EUIPO’s operations, oversaw the convergence programme, expanded the office’s operations and worked with national offices to facilitate the expansion of European Trademark and Design Network activities. These changes, especially on the digital side, saw the EUIPO ranked as the world’s most innovative IP office in World Trademark Review’s IP innovation index earlier in the year.

That means, of course, his successor will have big shoes to fill. In the meantime, we reached out to key associations and every national IP office in the European Union for their reaction about the move. We present the responses we received in full below (we'll add any more we receive to the end of this article):

Etienne Sanz de Acedo, CEO of the International Trademark Association (INTA):

“On behalf of INTA, I wish to congratulate Mr Campinos on this appointment at the EPO. The EUIPO has made significant advances during his tenure, much to the benefit of brand owners and consumers throughout Europe and globally. Certainly, Mr Campinos brings tremendous value to the EPO. INTA looks forward to continuing collaboration with those seeking to strengthen IP rights and foster innovation.”

Edmond Simon, director general of The Benelux Office for Intellectual Property (BOIP):

"The BOIP warmly welcomes the election of Mr António Campinos as the next president of the European Patent Office. Based on his track record as executive director of the EUIPO, we are convinced that the EPO board has found an excellent candidate in Mr Campinos. Under his leading, the EUIPO has been successfully transformed into a dynamic, professional and vibrant organization. The network of IP offices in Europe has become a tangible reality thanks to a strong cooperation on technical level and fantastic results in the Convergence Programme. Not to mention his achievements in the fields of IP promotion and IP enforcement. We would like to extend our warmest congratulations to António Campinos and wish him the very best in his new function."

Richard Messinger, president of the Slovakian Intellectual Property Office:

“The Slovak delegation, represented by Mr Richard Messinger, welcomes the appointment of Mr António Campinos to the position of president of the EPO. Slovakia was impressed by the outstanding presentation given by Mr Campinos on his vision about the future functioning of the EPO, as well as his insight and knowledge of its functions and challenges. Social dialogue, continuous improvement of quality of services and products, total digitalisation of the office to further optimise the lengths of the patent granting and opposition procedures were among the most relevant areas tackled. When it comes to roles of the EPC contracting countries, we were satisfied to hear that the principles of complementarity and subsidiarity will be further enhanced by means of cooperation initiatives.”

Tim Moss, chief executive of the UK Intellectual Property Office:

"I welcome the election of António Campinos as the new EPO President. From his time as executive director of the EUIPO, he brings with him a wealth of experience and knowledge of both the challenges and the opportunities that the global IP system presents. The UK IPO looks forward to working with him and his team during his tenure."

The European Communities Trademark Association (ECTA):

“ECTA Management Committee, Council and Members warmly congratulate António Campinos on his appointment as President of the EPO and trust that his passion for IP, excellent leadership skills and enthusiasm will be valuable assets to the EPO.”

The Association of European Trademark Owners (MARQUES):

"MARQUES congratulates Mr Campinos on his appointment as next President of the European Patent Office and wishes him every success in his new role. In view of his high-ranking profile within the International IP community, and the noteworthy achievements of his and of the EUIPO Staff under his management of the Office since 2010, the news of Mr Campinos’ appointment to EPO presidency has not come as a surprise at MARQUES.

“As one of the five permanent observer user associations at EUIPO, MARQUES has been actively involved in collaborating with the office and has participated to all cooperation and convergence initiatives that the office have run under its first and second – and still ongoing - strategic plans, under Mr. Campinos’ mandate. MARQUES can thus witness the significance of the results achieved by the office over the past seven years, in improving efficiency and quality of its internal operations, in developing a fully-fledged IT service management, in the creation and maintenance of a wide range of tools and services for users as well as in fostering a strong network collaboration scheme to help harmonisation of trademark and design systems and practices at national, regional and international levels, and facilitate a true dialogue among European and International IP stakeholders, including in the context of the very long process of the EUTM legal reform.

“MARQUES looks forward with interest to the appointment of a successor to Mr Campinos as EUIPO executive director that can ensure consistency and continuity and the same level of commitment to users’ involvement and users’ needs in future, as Mr. Campinos has shown during his term at EUIPO.”

Vojko Toman, CEO, Slovenian Intellectual Property Office:

“We congratulate Mr. António Campinos on his election. We are certain that based on his past achievements he will lead EPO to new successes. We wish him lots of success and look forward to our future cooperation.”

Director General`s Office of the Croatian Intellectual Property Office:

“We welcome the election of Mr Campinos as the next president of the EPO in an open and transparent procedure. His outstanding experience and results in leading the intellectual property organisations will surely provide further ambitious and dynamic development of the EPO in line with the needs and expectations of patent system stakeholders.”