About Us


Sapphire IP was founded by Kate Lees, who has over 18 years’ experience in the field of intellectual property law, being a Registered UK Patent Attorney and Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA), a qualified European Patent Attorney (EPA), an Affiliate Member of the Institute of Trade Mark Attorneys (ITMA), and a Professional Representative for European Trade Marks and Designs entitled to act before the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM).

Kate originally obtained a BSc degree in Biochemistry & Biological Chemistry from the University of Nottingham, graduating in 1993. She then went on to obtain a Master of Science degree in the Management of Intellectual Property Law from Queen Mary & Westfield College, University of London in 1994.

Kate trained with a small firm of patent and trade mark attorneys in Liverpool, gaining experience in all aspects of intellectual property law, including patents, designs and trade marks. She qualified as a UK Patent Attorney in 1996, being awarded the Gill Prize for General Excellence in her qualifying examinations, and went on to qualify as a European Patent Attorney in 1998. The Liverpool office became part of large international intellectual property law firm and Kate was made a Partner of the firm in 2001. Kate moved from the Liverpool office to their Cheltenham office in 2007 where she remained as a Partner until 2012. Having obtained considerable experience in both intellectual property matters and managing an office, Kate then decided to set up her own business, Sapphire IP.

We have a wide range of experience in relation to a broad spectrum of subject matter, including mechanical, chemical and biochemical inventions and have acted for individual inventors, start-up companies, universities, foreign associates, spin-out companies and large national and international companies. Examples of our technical expertise include:

  • Healthcare products such as wound healing preparations; sutures, surgical instruments, prosthetics, drip monitors, syringe drivers and food supplements;
  • Pathogen detectors, nano-conjugates for drug delivery, anti-viral agents, vaccines, anti-maturing agents for cells in culture;
  • Oil recovery processes;
  • Air decontamination apparatus and sterilization processes; water treatment; heating equipment;
  • Assisted living products;
  • Agrochemicals and whey treatment processes;
  • Industrial coatings, metalorganic compounds and packaging products.

We are also part of K2 IP, an innovative network of patent and trade mark attorneys from a wide range of backgrounds and technologies. Our involvement in K2 means that we have access to a wider network of resources with which to serve clients. For further information on K2 please get in touch and we’ll tell you some more about what K2 can do and why we are so excited to be involved.

Work Photo 3

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