Over the past three years, Philip Morris International (PMI) has made a dramatic pivot away from the marketing and sales of combustible cigarettes, and moved towards its Reduced-Risk Product (RRP) portfolio, focusing on its flagship product, IQOS. This product is PMI’s step forward to creating a “smoke-free future” for legal age consumers who continue to enjoy tobacco, but are seeking smoke-free alternatives. All of this has been accompanied by an organization-wide transformation in ways of working, culture and strategy. The position will be based in Neuchâtel, Switzerland and report to the Senior Counsel Patents/ Director.
We are currently seeking an experienced, dynamic and collaborative professional to serve as Senior Patent Counsel, The position will be based in Neuchâtel, Switzerland and report to the Senior Counsel Patents/ Director.
In this role, you will:
- Identify and protect PMI’s technical innovations by appropriate intellectual property rights:
- Provide expert patent counsel and IP legal support to stakeholders in the research and development, operations, brand building, and legal functions
- Identify and protect valuable innovations prior to disclosure through working with internal researchers and management, external business partners and outside counsel
- Manage an international patent portfolio including supervising and coordinating with outside counsel and consulting with stakeholders on acquisition, retention and exploitation of patent assets
- Develop and implement efficient intellectual property protection strategies that support and advance PMI’s business strategies
- Support and counsel the business on decisions related to the maintenance and enforcement of PMI’s technical IP rights
- Assess impact of third party rights on business and research activities, including competitive analyses, validity, freedom-to-operate and non-infringements assessments; design and implement strategies to manage the Company's potential exposure and risks.
- Counsel on IP aspects of transactional matters including licensing and agreements third parties, e.g. technology transfer and joint-development agreements.
- Represent the Technology & Intellectual Property Law Group in cross-functional projects and business teams.
- Lead oppositions and patent litigation efforts involving PMI as plaintiff or defendant.
- Lead or host IP due diligence investigations.
Foster an IP culture and raise organizational IP awareness including conducting dynamic trainings.
As PMI outsources a large proportion of its drafting and prosecution work, the appointee will be required to manage outside counsel.
Due to the wide range of technologies associated with the Company’s development, production and logistical processes, the appointee will be exposed to a wide variety of technologies and sciences spanning PMI’s product research and development.
The successful applicant must:
Significant Post qualification experience as a fully qualified European Patent Attorney, or a comparable national professional qualification.
An excellent educational background to – at minimum – University degree level or equivalent, in Materials Science, Chemical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering or Physics.
Familiarity with the dynamics associated with working in an in-house patent department of a major corporation.
Profound experience in international patent procurement and multi-jurisdictional patent portfolio management, invalidity and freedom-to-operate opinion work.
Strong practical knowledge of the European Patent Convention and the Patent Cooperation
Project management skills.
Fluency in English – the Company’s official working language and in addition
Candidates must also be able to demonstrate the following personal qualities:
Be highly self-motivated and result-oriented, with the ability to work autonomously, the capability of achieving stretch goals and thinking and acting strategically.
Excellent interpersonal skills with the ability to relate comfortably at all levels within the organization.
Exceptional verbal and written communication and presentation skills in English.
A “hands-on” approach, with the ability to act proactively in a fast-moving environment.
Excellent analytical and learning capability.
A positive, enthusiastic, proactive and engaging manner and attitude.
Excellent leadership and organizational skills.
Flexibility and adaptability working in a multicultural, success-orientated company, which possesses excellent standards of ethics and behavior.
Philip Morris International: Building a Smoke-Free Future
Philip Morris International (PMI) is leading a transformation in the tobacco industry to create a smoke-free future and ultimately replace cigarettes with smoke-free products to the benefit of adults who would otherwise continue to smoke, society, the company and its shareholders. PMI is a leading international tobacco company engaged in the manufacture and sale of cigarettes, smoke-free products and associated electronic devices and accessories, and other nicotine-containing products in markets outside the U.S. PMI is building a future on a new category of smoke-free products that, while not risk-free, are a much better choice than continuing to smoke. Through multidisciplinary capabilities in product development, state-of-the-art facilities and scientific substantiation, PMI aims to ensure that its smoke-free products meet adult consumer preferences and rigorous regulatory requirements. PMI’s smoke-free IQOS product portfolio includes heated tobacco and nicotine-containing vapor products. As of Dec. 31, 2018, PMI estimates that approximately 6.6 million adult smokers around the world have already stopped smoking and switched to PMI’s heated tobacco product, which is currently available for sale in 44 markets in key cities or nationwide under the IQOS brand. For more information, see our PMI and PMIScience websites.