Air Liquide is a world leader in gases, technologies and services for Industry and Health, with a presence in 80 countries, with approximately 67,000 employees and serving more than 3.7 million customers and patients. Oxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen are essential small molecules for life, matter and energy. They embody Air Liquide’s scientific territory and have been at the core of the company’s activities since its creation in 1902.
Air Liquide serves a very wide variety of customers around the world and acts as a partner to nearly every sector of the economy. At the core of the Group’s business, industrial and medical gases are used in numerous industrial processes, such as water treatment, glass manufacturing and farming. They are present in consumer products (food, beverages, smartphones, cars, etc.), hospitals and patients’ homes. Whether producing gas or supplying technological equipment and services, Air Liquide designs and implements a multitude of solutions, tailored to the needs of its customers. The Group’s presence in the field, alongside small businesses, large companies and healthcare professionals alike, enables it to detect new needs, develop a detailed understanding of the changes in various markets and offer innovative solutions to meet its customers’ needs.
Air Liquide is now seeking a Head of IP, in succession to the previous incumbent, to assume responsibility for the management of a global team. A rare opportunity, the role encompasses taking charge of a sizeable IP department, composed of teams servicing specific areas of IP, namely: Patents; Technology Transactions; Trademarks, Designs and Domain Names – all supported by teams covering Business Administration and Business Control. The Department is highly international, spread across locations in France (Paris), Germany (Frankfurt), the US (Houston, Delaware), China (Shanghai) and Japan (Tokyo).
Based out of the company’s Paris headquarters, the key responsibilities of the position will be as follows:
- Lead, grow and develop the global IP team;
- Oversee the execution of all IP activities as detailed (but not limited to) the above;
- Participate in Group M&A activities and the IP components of such transactions;
- Devise and implement the company’s global IP strategy in line with corporate objectives;
- Continue to educate and raise the profile of the IP department across Air Liquide, increasing its importance and standing within the Group.
The successful candidate is likely to fulfil the following criteria:
- Possess a technical or law degree;
- Be either a fully-qualified European Patent Attorney (EPA) or a lawyer with deep technical experience of IP – with strong knowledge of patent and other IP laws & regulations essential;
- Have a significant number of years’ experience in the IP field, across all areas of IP;
- Ideally be a native French speaker or, at minimum, possess sound business fluency within French. Fluency in English is mandatory, with other languages also highly beneficial;
- Demonstrated experience of leading a large international and multicultural IP team and of having grown and developed talent, with ability to maximise the skills and potential of others;
- Possess extensive experience of having negotiated IP-related agreements, including licensing;
- Demonstrated experience of managing cross-border litigation;
- Be well-versed in M&A transactions;
- Possess experience of multi-stakeholder management relating to IP issues and also with HR and finance functions on a global basis;
- Possess the ability to respect and leverage diversity while demonstrating fairness and empathy in all interactions;
- Possess highly developed relationship skills, with the ability to communicate at all levels across an organisation;
- Display honesty, transparency and sensitivity as essential attributes in all dealings, both internal and external.