GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is a science-led global healthcare company with a special purpose: to help people do more, feel better, live longer. Over 100,000 employees across 150 countries, with 16,000 employees in R&D alone, work across three businesses: pharmaceuticals, vaccines, and consumer healthcare.
GSK is going through an unprecedented period of growth and change. With significant product launches planned in the next few years, substantial ongoing business development of both assets and technologies, and a robust pipeline of biologics, small molecules, and cell and gene therapies in development for the future, IP will continue to remain indispensable to the successful execution of the company’s strategy.
Based in Wavre, Belgium, this role is accountable for providing quality patent support to research and development projects, primarily within the vaccines business locally within Belgium and internationally. This a unique opportunity to work at the heart of a science-led, global healthcare company – interacting directly with business leaders and clients, with the ability to influence the overall IP strategy.
Key responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:
- Produce quality IP work on a range of projects or platforms, as well as drafting, filing, and prosecuting patent applications to secure protection for R&D investment.
- Direct communication with patent offices, foreign agents, and internally at R&D project team and IP department meetings.
- Provide legal counselling for clients to avert legal risks, through the proposition of creative, strategic IP advice directly to R&D projects or Governance bodies through consultation with the Business Area head.
- Build patent portfolios, understand, and advise on the interplay between patents and non-patent exclusivity, identify FTO issues and analyse complex third-party situations. The solutions are not always straightforward and pragmatic and creative solutions are required.
- Provide client advice that is strategic and thoughtful, using clear and concise written and oral communication skills and the ability to translate complex matters into simple terms digestible by a wide variety of audiences.
- Responsibility for maintaining your awareness of developing case law, being able to apply this to your drafting and prosecution practice.
- Work on teams responsible for evaluating and mitigating risks to our IP through oppositions, litigation, or IPRs, including representing GSK at hearings before the European Patent Office.
- Provide IP support to Business Development for both in and out-licensing opportunities, including performing due diligence on proposed business transactions and negotiating legal agreements.
The successful candidate will ideally possess the following:
- Degree-qualified in Life Sciences, Biology, Biochemistry or similar. A PhD in Life Sciences would be desirable.
- Recently qualified or about to be qualified as a European Patent Attorney, with a national patents qualification for the jurisdiction in which you are practicing.
- Excellent analytical, problem-solving and communication skills with the ability to devise solutions for patent law issues to maximise IP protection and minimise risk.
- Demonstrable qualities of diligence, approachability, and confidence when interacting with R&D colleagues and others internally and externally.
- Excellent communications skills and proactive approach to connecting and communicating with stakeholders and business partners at all levels and across different business areas.
- A “team-player” attitude, inclusive by nature, and enjoys working as part of a dynamic team.
- Prior experience as a Patent Attorney or trainee within the pharmaceutical or biotechnology industry (“in house”) is preferred but not required.