McAndrews, Held & Malloy to Sponsor 2016 INTA and AIPPI Event on the Future of Design Law in Singapore


McAndrews, Held & Malloy will be an Executive Platinum Sponsor of the highly anticipated Designs: Into the Future conference, organized by the International Trademark Association (INTA) and the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI). The conference, to be held February 29-March 1, 2016, in Singapore, marks the first time in INTA’s and AIPPI’s 100-plus year histories that the two influential associations have come together to host an industry-leading event.

Designs: Into the Future will take a deep dive into how to leverage the value of design rights as key protection and enforcement tools. Sessions include global protection strategies and experience-based tips on how best to use The Hague Agreement; multi-jurisdictional disputes; alternatives to litigation; current issues in design law; and more. Attendees will also hear from the AIPPI and INTA Design Rights Committees for an update on the lobbying and education efforts of both organizations. For a complete program agenda, or to register, click here.

More than 200 experts in the field, including government officials, registered patent attorneys and brand owners, are expected to attend. This includes the following members of INTA’s and AIPPI’s leadership team: Etienne Sanz de Acedo, CEO of INTA; Felipe Claro, President of AIPPI; and John Bochnovic, Executive Director of AIPPI.

McAndrews shareholder Christopher V. Carani, an internationally recognized authority in design law and current chair of the AIPPI’s Design Rights Committee, is an integral member of the project team planning the conference. During the two-day event, Carani will speak at four sessions. McAndrews shareholders Wilhlem L. Rao, Ronald A. DiCerbo and associate Dunstan H. Barnes, Ph.D., will also attend the conference.

McAndrews has long been considered a thought leader in design law. The firm has secured and enforced iconic designs for some of the world’s largest companies in industries ranging from furniture and medical devices to fashion and consumer electronics. McAndrews attorneys are often called upon to deliver creative design patent prosecution strategies for market preservation, design-around recommendations for entire product lines and innovative integration of design rights with trade dress and other IP protection. The firm has also served in key leadership roles on design committees at the Intellectual Property Owners Association, the American Bar Association and the Industrial Designers Society of America, and often contributes to the U.S. Patent Office’s annual Design Day.  For the 2016-17 term, McAndrews has the proud distinction of serving as an Ambassador on IP Protection for the Industrial Designers Society of America.


Christopher V. Carani, Esq., practices in all areas of intellectual property. He is a leading voice and internationally recognized in the field of Design IP (design patents, trade dress and copyrights), having litigated numerous design disputes, and published and lectured extensively on the topic. He represents some of the world’s most design centric companies, including the top filer of U.S. design patents. He counsels a wide range of clients on strategic design protection and enforcement issues, often called upon to render infringement, validity and design-around opinions. Carani has worked with clients securing over 2,000 design rights, both in the U.S and in over 70 countries around the world. He is the current chair of the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property Design Rights Committee and the immediate past Chair of the American Bar Association’s Design Rights Committee, and the past chair of the American Intellectual Property Law Association’s Committee on Industrial Designs. He has litigated numerous disputes regarding design rights and has served as a legal consultant and expert witness in design law cases in a wide range of industries, including consumer electronics and accessories, consumer retail products, furniture, medical devices, apparel, footwear, and sporting goods, to name a few. In addition, Carani has authored amicus briefs for landmark U.S. design patent cases, such as Egyptian Goddess v. Swisa, Lawman Armor Corp. v. Winner Int’l LLC, Calmar, Inc. v. Arminak & Assoc. and Richardson v. Stanley Works, Inc. Carani earned an engineering degree from Marquette University and a law degree from the University of Chicago, and went on to serve as a law clerk to the Honorable Rebecca Pallmeyer at the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. He is a registered patent attorney and licensed to practice before the USPTO.

Carani is an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Northwestern University School of Law teaching intellectual property law. He is a frequent contributor to CNN on intellectual property law issues, and is often called upon to provide commentary to other major media outlets, including New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, NPR, PBS TV, CNBC TV, BBC, Bloomberg TV, and Reuters. Away from the law, Chris is a studied jazz musician who plays upright bass on the Chicago jazz circuit. Follow Carani (@ccarani) on Twitter:


Wilhelm L. Rao has been at the firm since 1997 and focuses his practice on litigating, procuring and developing intellectual property rights across a wide-range of technologies. He has represented clients from Fortune 50 corporations to small burgeoning businesses, as well as individuals. Rao has been involved in all facets of patent prosecution, written opinions and reexaminations, licensing and the successful multi-venue, multi-patent, multi-party patent litigation all across the United States, both at the trial and appellate levels. He has represented clients in a range of technology areas, including: medical devices, specialty chemicals, apparel, consumer electronics and accessories, consumer retail products, furniture and fabric design.

A trial-experienced litigator, Rao has touched on all areas of complex litigation, including pre-filing investigations, pleadings and motions, discovery, pretrial (including Markman proceedings), hearings and taking witnesses at trial. A number of matters that Rao has been involved in have been resolved by alternative dispute resolution, including resolution through the American Arbitration Association. Rao has also represented clients pro bono, including recently in a state court proceeding.


Ronald A. DiCerbo is active in all aspects of intellectual property, including patent, trademark and copyright prosecution and litigation; IP portfolio management; unfair competition; licensing; trademark oppositions and cancellations; and product development and acquisition. He counsels small and large clients in a diverse range of industries such as automotive products, consumer electronics, fashion design, jewelry, and medical devices.

DiCerbo’s patent litigation experience includes due diligence review of IP rights, pre-litigation dispute resolution, discovery, claim construction, and trial and appellate practice. His trademark litigation experience includes asserting and defending claims of trademark infringement and unfair competition in state and federal courts. DiCerbo has represented clients in domestic and international trademark prosecution, in state and federal courts, in inter partes and ex parte proceedings before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board at the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and in trademark opposition and cancellation proceedings before trademark offices in Europe, Australia and South Africa.


Dunstan H. Barnes, Ph.D., has considerable experience in protecting and analyzing design rights, including drafting and prosecuting design patent applications, and conducting opinion work and due diligence investigations. Barnes also has experience drafting and prosecuting trademark applications and utility patent applications in a wide range of technological fields and industries.

Barnes graduated from Chicago-Kent College of Law, where he was the President of the Intellectual Property Law Society, a Notes & Comments Editor for the Chicago-Kent Law Review, and a Submissions Editor for the Journal of Intellectual Property. Prior to law school, he earned his Ph.D. in Materials Science & Metallurgy from the University of Cambridge. Follow Barnes (@DunstanBarnes) on Twitter: