Designing Britain’s Future: 22nd November

How design protection in commerce and industry will progress post Brexit

This IPAN network considered how design protection will change after Brexit, what Government is planning, and how industry needs to adapt.

Our  invited panel of experts includes Dids Macdonald OBE (CEO of ACID), Prof Rob Holdway (Giraffe Innovation Ltd), Nathan Abraham (IPO, EU Exit policy: TMs and Designs) and Margaret Briffa (IP solicitor).  See below for more information about the speakers and their talks including a copy of their slides and photographs from the event.


Speaker Profiles and Topics of Discussion

Dids Macdonald has over 25 years experience within the design sector and co-founded ACID (Anti Copying in Design) because her products were consistently copied. ACID represents 1000’s of designers and campaigns for design law reforms, most notably the introduction of criminal provisions for the intentional infringement of a registered design enshrined in the 2014 IP Act. Dids is passionate about helping micro and SMEs protect their valuable IP via education and awareness and by creating a proactive IP Strategy. In June 2015 Dids was made an Honorary Fellow of the British Institute of Interior Design and the same month Dids was also made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in Her Majesty’s Birthday Honours for her services to the design industry. In June 2016, Dids was nominated into the Design Week Hall of Fame and in July 2016 ACID was named as IP Champion by the Alliance for Intellectual Property on its first British IP Day at Westminster. In November 2017 Dids was honoured by the UK Designer Kitchen & Bathroom Awards. The Services to the Industry Award is given each year to an individual who has made a broader contribution to the development and success of design in and around the industry.

Dids’ slides are available here

Dids Macdonald OBE - Chief Executive of ACID - Anti Copying in Design

Topic: Challenges and opportunities for the creative industries in designing for the future

Nathan has been Joint Head of EU Exit Policy for Trade Marks and Designs since April 2018, focusing on the UK’s preparation for exit and its impact upon both registered and unregistered EU intellectual property rights. Prior to his current role. Nathan was Head of UK Examination Practice for Trade Marks and Designs, with responsibility for ensuring that IPO’s examination practice reflects UK and European law. He has represented the UK Registrar at appeals relating to absolute grounds matters before the Appointed Person, and has also instructed UK Government lawyers on matters before the UK Courts and the CJEU. Since 2012, Nathan has been the UK’s representative in a range of EU convergence projects aimed at harmonising trade mark practices across the EU IPO and Community Trade Mark Offices.

INathan’s slide can be viewed here.

Nathan Abraham - Joint Head of EU Exit Policy, Trade Marks and Designs, UK IPO

Topic: the “design” for Brexit

Margaret is a leading Intellectual Property Solicitor and Founder of Briffa. She advises on all aspects of intellectual property protection and enforcement with a particular emphasis on dispute resolution.

Margaret is well known for her commercial approach to the most complex problems which delivers clients the business solution they want. While resolving disputes in the best way possible Margaret has represented clients in court on numerous design trade mark patent and copyright matters. Leading cases which have set legal precedent in Intellectual Property include:

· Magmatic v PMS Group International Limited (The ‘Trunki’ case concerning ride on childrens’ suitcases where Margaret presented Trunki.

· Future New Developments v Green Lane Products v PMS International Limited

· Farmers Build v Carriers Bulk Handling Limited (2008)

· Parker v Tidball

· Norowzian v Arks & Guinness Brewing Worldwide

She is co-author of Law Society Publication ‘Design Law’ and writers of numerous articles on Intellectual Property. She regularly speaks at IP events where she delivers messages through case studies and humour.

Margaret’s slides can be found here.

Margaret Briffa - Briffa IP Solicitors

Topic: Design Protection, past and future