Michael Browne

Michael advises on the enforcement and exploitation of all forms of intellectual property, as well as competition law issues which frequently arise in IP matters.

His clients hail from a variety of industry sectors, ranging from international fashion brands, multinational technology companies, computer games publishers, industrial and diversified product manufacturers and high-end interior furnishing retailers, to health food manufacturers, airline seat designers and cosmetics and toiletries suppliers.

Michael has litigated IP cases in the English High Court, including the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court (IPEC) (formerly the Patents County Court), the UK IPO and the EU IPO, as well as the Court of Justice of the European Union.

He also regularly advises clients on the commercial exploitation of their IP rights. In particular, he has significant experience advising on, drafting and negotiating international franchise agreements, licences and other forms of distribution agreement.

Having undertaken the course himself in 2009, Michael is now a visiting lecturer on the Oxford University Post Graduate Diploma in Intellectual Property Law and Practice. He is also actively involved in a number of professional organisations, including UNION IP (of which he is a GB group Council member), the Competition Law Association (of which he is a Committee Member and National Reporter General) and CIPA.

Michael is a regular contributor to the Community Designs Handbook. He regularly speaks at conferences and professional association events and writes articles on topical intellectual property matters.

Prior to joining Wiggin Michael was a partner at Redd, having originally trained at Eversheds.


  • Experience

    Contentious work includes:

    • Co-ordinating a sophisticated anti-counterfeiting operation relating to high-value automotive aftermarket goods involving both domestic and international law enforcement agencies.
    • Successfully obtaining interim injunctions on behalf of the claimant in patent entitlement proceedings before the High Court.
    • Acting for Microsoft Corporation in a variety of trade mark disputes relating to the Skype brand.
    • Acting for Deutsche Börse and Market News International Inc. in breach of contract and copyright infringement proceedings before the High Court.
    • Acting for the Dutch lifestyle brand Fatboy the Original in registered and unregistered design right infringement proceedings under the High Court Shorter Trials pilot scheme.
    • Acting for fast food retailer West Cornwall Pasty Co. Limited in registered trade mark infringement and passing off proceedings before the High Court.
    • Running a significant enforcement program for an iconic footwear brand against look-a-like products.
    • Acting for Titon Hardware Limited in patent and UK unregistered design right infringement proceedings relating to ventilation heat exchanger units before the High Court.
    • Acting for the international sports equipment manufacturer Srixon in registered trade mark infringement and passing off proceedings before the IPEC.
    • Advising PDL BioPharma in a complex and high value patent licensing dispute with Genentech and Roche relating to several blockbuster products, including Herceptin and Avastin.
    • Acting for Earlex Limited in the successful defence of patent infringement proceedings in the High Court relating to HVLP spray gun technology.
    • Acting for the international publisher Harlequin in High Court proceedings relating to registered trade mark and copyright infringement in the context of the unauthorised reproduction and distribution of Mills & Boon eBook titles.
    • Acting for the claimant in High Court proceedings competition law against the internet registry responsible for .uk domain names seeking the release of two-letter .co.uk names.

    Commercial work includes:

    • Drafting and negotiating franchise agreements on behalf of high street fashion brands for outlets in various jurisdictions around the world including those in Europe, North and Central America, the Middle East and the Far East.
    • Drafting and negotiating a variety of commercial agreements including (for example) patent and trade mark licence agreements, agency arrangements, wholesale and selective distribution networks, R&D and product development projects, non-disclosure obligations and consulting contracts.
    • Advising clients in relation to the promotion and advertising of goods in the UK and Europe in order to comply with (for example) local marketing, advertising, gaming, data protection and competition law issues.
    • Undertaking freedom to operate exercises in connection with new brand concepts.
    • Providing combined patent infringement and competition law advice in the context of the negotiation of FRAND licence terms under the MPEG-2 patent standard.