Tilleke & Gibbins

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Tilleke & Gibbins
Headquarters Bangkok, Thailand
No. of offices 6
No. of attorneys Over 120
Major practice areas Corporate/Commercial, Intellectual Property, Litigation
Date founded 1890

Tilleke & Gibbins is a regional law firm in Southeast Asia, with offices in Bangkok, Hanoi, Ho Chih Minh City, Jakarta, Vientiane, and Yangon. The firm's core practices are commercial transactions, mergers and acquisitions, dispute resolution, litigation, and intellectual property law.


In 1890, William Alfred Tilleke, a Ceylonese solicitor, began a new practice in Siam (now Thailand).[1] In 1894, Tilleke gained recognition when he successfully defended Phra Yot Muang Kwang, a Thai provincial governor, who had been accused of murdering a French military officer.[2][3] In the face of colonial pressure by the French and before a French Court conducted in Thailand, Tilleke exonerated Phra Yot through affirmative evidence and all seven judges presiding returned a "Not Guilty" verdict.[4] Ralph Gibbins, an Englishman, joined the firm in 1902 and later became a legal adviser in the Siamese Ministry of Justice, before serving as a judge of the International Court in 1916.

Samuel Brighouse and Reginald Atkinson led the firm from 1911 until Thailand’s involvement in World War II in 1941. During the war, the firm was safeguarded by Ina Jorgensen, who was the secretary of Victor Jaques, a partner at Tilleke & Gibbins. In 1946, Mr. Jaques ran the firm as the sole partner remaining after the war had ended.

In 1951, Albert Lyman purchased the firm from Victor Jaques for $2,500. Mr. Lyman and his wife, Freda, ran the firm with a Thai partner, Rojvit Periera. The Lymans’ son, David, joined the firm in 1967 and took over Tilleke & Gibbins’ operations after his father’s death in 1984.

Practice areas[edit]

Tilleke & Gibbins, a full-service law firm that has core practice areas focusing on commercial transactions and M&A, dispute resolution and litigation, and intellectual property. In total, the firm offers 18 areas of expertise:[5]

  • Anti-Corruption
  • Antitrust and Competition
  • Banking and Finance
  • Bankruptcy and Restructuring
  • Commercial Transactions and M&A
  • Corporate Services
  • Dispute Resolution and Litigation
  • Employment
  • Energy
  • Family Law and Private Clients
  • Government Relations
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property
  • Property
  • Regulatory Affairs
  • Tax
  • Technology, Multimedia, and Communications
  • Transportation and Logistics

The firm employs over 100 lawyers and 250 support staff. It is headed by David Lyman, Chairman & Chief Values Officer. Darani Vachanavuttivong and Tiziana Sucharitkul are the Co-Managing Partners of the firm.


In what has been widely regarded as the most complex patent litigation matter in Thai history, Tilleke & Gibbins successfully represented a global leader in materials science before the Intellectual Property and International Trade Court (IP&IT Court) and obtained a very favorable settlement just prior to the rendering of judgment. In addition to securing a rare Anton Piller Order to seize infringing goods and successfully prove the other party’s infringement, Tilleke & Gibbins also formulated strategies for protecting the validity of the client’s valuable patent. The global settlement secured the client’s advantageous market position worldwide and resolved multiple disputes spanning several jurisdictions.[6]

Tilleke & Gibbins won a historic judgment for a global technology leader against former employees who misappropriated the client’s tremendously valuable trade secret technology. In the IP&IT Court decision, the client was awarded an injunction against use and disclosure of its trade secret technologies, including machines, processes, and information. The client also received substantial damages and recovery of legal fees. This was the first case that a trade secret owner has successfully enforced against trade secret misappropriation in Thailand.[7]

With regard to mergers and acquisitions, Tilleke & Gibbins advised a multinational pharmaceutical company on various corporate consolidation matters in Thailand and Vietnam arising from its worldwide merger with another leading pharmaceutical company. After the integration became effective, the firm helped the subsidiaries comply with a myriad of legal requirements and assisted the client in obtaining the necessary permits.[8]

Tilleke & Gibbins successfully defended one of Thailand’s largest foreign investors against an international insurance provider in four complex defective product lawsuits pertaining to power generation equipment. The court dismissed each of the multimillion dollar lawsuits. The firm was also successful in defending a leading global logistics company in three separate criminal actions brought by the Thai Customs Department, each carrying considerable fines.[9]


Tilleke & Gibbins’ main office is in Bangkok, Thailand, with other offices in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, Jakarta, Indonesia, Vientiane, Laos, and Yangon, Myanmar.[10]

Awards and rankings[edit]

The Tilleke & Gibbins intellectual property practice is consistently ranked as the top IP practice in Thailand in leading legal directories, such as Chambers Asia[11] and The Asia Pacific Legal 500.[12] The firm has also been named Thailand IP Firm of the Year by Managing Intellectual Property.[13] and has won the Asia Women in Business Law award in 2011 by Euromoney.[14]

Tilleke & Gibbins has also been highly ranked[by whom?] in Thailand and Vietnam for its practices in Corporate and M&A, Dispute Resolution, TMT, Tax, and Transportation and Logistics.


Tilleke & Gibbins is active in several international associations of independent law firms, such as Lex Mundi, Multilaw, Pacific Rim Advisory Council, State Capital Law Firm Group, and TransAtlantic Law International.[citation needed]

Museum of Counterfeit Goods[edit]

The firm's Bangkok office is the site of the Tilleke & Gibbins Museum of Counterfeit Goods, established in 1989. The museum’s collection includes more than 3,500 pieces of infringing trademark and copyrighted goods, in categories such as clothing, footwear, watches and eyewear, accessories, cosmetics and perfumes, food and household products, drugs, alcohol and cigarettes, copyrighted works, stationery and office supplies, automotive parts, tools, electrical devices, and miscellaneous products.[15] The museum has been featured on CNN and BBC in documentaries on counterfeiting in Thailand.[citation needed] The Christian Science Monitor and TIME magazine also have profiled the museum.[16][17]


  1. ^ Tilleke & Gibbins Official Profile
  2. ^ Subject Siam: Family, Law, and Colonial Modernity in Thailand by Tamara Lynn Loos, published by Cornell University Press (2006), 60.
  3. ^ The Peoples and Politics of the Far East, by Henry Norman (2001), 481.
  4. ^ The Peoples and Politics of the Far East, by Henry Norman (2001), 481.
  5. ^ List of Practice Areas
  6. ^ IP Litigation
  7. ^ IP Litigation
  8. ^ M&A
  9. ^ Dispute Resolution and Litigation
  10. ^ List of Offices
  11. ^ Chambers Asia Awards 2010
  12. ^ Legal 500 Thailand
  13. ^ Managing Intellectual Property Global Awards 2010
  14. ^ [1]
  15. ^ Museum of Counterfeit Goods Home Page
  16. ^ Christian Science Monitor Article
  17. ^ Time Article

External links[edit]