Sidel, one of three industry groups of Tetra Laval, is a leading provider of equipment and services solutions for packaging beverage, food, home and personal care products. Since its beginnings, Sidel has been a pioneer in the development of beverage packaging technologies, successively in glass bottles, metal cans and finally plastic bottles, which the company originated in the 1960s. Today, Sidel continues to lead the industry by providing high performance packaging production solutions that enhance productivity and flexibility while reducing material consumption and conserving energy.
Headquartered in Parma Italy, Sidel employs over 5000 employees worldwide and achieved annual net sales of €1.4 billion. Sidel has over 300 engineers and scientists across its 10 R&D centres, and the key R&D sites are located in France and Italy. The Italian R&D sites in Parma and Mantova specialize in filling machines and labelling machines respectively. The R&D site in Octeville, France specializes in plastic bottle design and blowing machines.
Innovation has always been the cornerstone of Sidel’s operations, and as such, IP has a high profile within Sidel and is acknowledged as being of paramount importance to the organization’s continued commercial success.
In preparation for the retirement of a highly experienced Senior IP Counsel based in Octeville, Sidel is looking for a skilled, experienced and well-rounded qualified European Patent Attorney to play a key role in managing the company’s IP affairs arising in France, and to provide IP counselling and support to the R&D groups, commercial teams and senior management in France.
The successful candidate will be required to develop and foster strong relationships with Sidel’s R&D community and business teams, provide IP advice to support business decisions and implement proactive IP strategies, as well as promoting IP awareness. The key responsibilities will include the following:
- Manage patent portfolio, including invention reporting, drafting patent application and global prosecution (front line with FR, EP and WIPO offices), and portfolio optimization;
- Provide Freedom-to-Operate analysis and recommendations, advise upon appropriate strategies for infringement avoidance;
- Interact with IP stakeholders in the group, including training and information sharing;
- Manage low-complexity disputes and EPO oppositions, with external counsel or lawyers as appropriate;
- Support IP aspects in transactions with third parties;
- Collaborate with transversal resources dedicated to administrative aspects, trademarks, and risk management;
- Drive and chair respective IP steering committee on a quarterly basis.
The successful candidate is likely to fulfil the following criteria:
- Be a fully qualified European Patent Attorney, ideally with experience in dealing with the French Patent Office;
- Possess an excellent technical background in mechanical engineering or other relevant technical disciplines such as electronics, computing or materials science;
- Possess experience in FTO work, coupled with strong knowledge of patent procedures and litigation in key jurisdictions;
- Fluency in both written and spoken English and French.