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Rouse launches in Africa - Joint venture tie-up agreed with South African specialist IP firm, Von Se

Rouse is the first global intellectual property (IP) firm to launch in sub-Saharan Africa after it confirmed a joint venture tie-up with specialist South African IP law firm, Von Seidels.

The joint venture will trade as Rouse Africa, and will be headquartered in Cape Town, with an office in Windhoek handling ARIPO work. Von Seidels already boasts a thriving sub-Saharan practice, with a team of locally-qualified lawyers and patent specialists from Cameroon, Nigeria and Kenya working with clients from across the world. Rouse Africa will look to build on this by creating a network of offices in further markets in the near future.

Rouse Africa will be led by Maura Canavan from Rouse. Maura will work closely with Von Seidels’ Managing Partner, Bastiaan Koster. Other key personnel in South Africa will include Von Seidels’ Trade Mark Partner Christine Strutt, Namibian and ARIPO Attorney Gunther Roland and Trade Mark Attorney Claire Brown. The joint venture will launch formally on 5 October 2015.

Rouse, which has opened offices in Russia and Myanmar in the past two years, has more than 600 staff in 16 offices around the world. It advised 30 per cent of the world’s Top Global Brands in 2014. Von Seidels, which was founded in 2007 in Cape Town was recognised as South Africa’s IP Firm of the Year in 2013 by Managing Intellectual Property Magazine.

Nick Redfearn, Deputy Chief Executive of Rouse, said:

“Rouse was founded in London, but it has always been a truly global firm – we opened our first office in China in 1993 and since then we have continually worked to expand our reach and expertise across the world. Africa is a continent rich in IP issues, for both domestic businesses and our international clients. We’ve been keen to establish a successful presence there for some time – but we wanted to get it right. We only wanted to work with the best, with colleagues who understood our culture and ambitions. Happily, we have found them in Von Seidels. The firm has a reputation for excellence in Africa and we're privileged to be working with them, and excited to be moving forward together to expand in key African markets."

Bastiaan Koster, Managing Partner of Von Seidels, said:

“The joint venture will strengthen our position as one of Africa’s leading IP law firms. Not only will this be a boost to our business, but the combination of Rouse’s international scale and Von Seidels’ local knowledge will help us expand further and faster in Africa. From our vantage point in Cape Town, we know there are substantial opportunities for IP practitioners across the continent. Like us, Rouse prides itself on being responsive to client needs and we share a commitment to practical, high quality service. Von Seidels’ structure and services in South Africa will not change – what is changing is our ability to widen our horizons and think bigger, while retaining our own reputation for excellence.”

For more information, please contact Maura Canavan.

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