1 January 2011
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Guillaume Minnoye and Raimund Lutz today take up office as new vice-presidents at the European Patent Office (EPO).
Guillaume Minnoye will be in charge of the EPO's Directorate-General Operations, which is responsible for examining European patent applications and conducting opposition proceedings. He will also act as Site Manager for the EPO's offices at The Hague and in Berlin. The 62-year-old Belgian succeeds German Thomas Hammer, who has retired.
Mr Minnoye began his career in 1971, as a patent examiner for electronic communications technology at the Institut International des Brevets, a predecessor of the EPO in The Hague. Prior to his appointment as Vice-President, he served as Principal Director for Patent Examination.
Raimund Lutz, from Germany, succeeds Wim van der Eijk as head of the Directorate-General Legal/International Affairs, which is in charge of legal matters, patent law and international relations. The Dutchman had been in the position in a temporary capacity, and will now return to other responsibilities.
Mr Lutz, a 60-year-old lawyer, can look back on a long career in the field of intellectual property rights. Amongst others, he has held leading positions at the German Federal Ministry of Justice and The German Patent and Trademark Office. From 2006, he was President of the German Federal Patent Court and served as Head of the German Delegation in the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation from 2005.