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08.05.06
Innovation South West

Christian Ziar (left) and Noel AkersA patent attorney whose company specialises in protecting new technology and innovations says that the South West is a booming place for creativity.

N J Akers and Co moved from London to offices in Cubert, near Newquay, in April 2005 and has doubled its staff in just one year.

Noel Akers, a European and Chartered patent attorney, said: "There is a huge amount of innovation and creativity in Cornwall. The number of local clients the business is dealing with is rocketing and we are doubling staff from two to four people on both professional and administrative capacities. The increase in our workload is a strong indication of the rapid economic growth within the county."

When the business relocated to Cornwall, Mr Akers was keen to benefit from two highly successful Objective One projects – actnow and Unlocking Cornish Potential. actnow has spearheaded the development of broadband amongst businesses in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and Unlocking Cornish Potential places graduates with businesses.

Mr Akers initially took on Cornish-born Christian Ziar under UCP. His 12 months has now finished and Mr Ziar is to be retained at N J Akers and Co as a Trademark Associate. Coincidentally his first trademark registration has just come through – a logo for the popular MI Bar which has premises in Truro and Falmouth. Mr Ziar was also instrumental in the firm securing a registration of a cloche design for Fowey Community College, to provide protection for a product designed by a team of pupils from the College.

N J Akers and Co has recently recruited a second graduate under the UCP scheme, to assist on the patent side of the business, and has also taken on an office administrator.

"We are the only business of this kind in Cornwall," said Mr Akers. "While we have overseas clients the number of clients from Cornwall and Devon is growing. Clients prefer someone they can meet and sit down with, not someone they have to deal with long distance. We are increasingly working with the business incubation units at the Combined Universities in Cornwall site at Tremough and in Plymouth."

For further information please contact Clare Morgan, Media Relations Manager, Objective One Partnership Office on 01872 223439 or email cmorgan@cornwall.gov.uk.

The Objective One Programme for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly has invested in actnow through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF) and in Unlocking Cornish Potential through the European Social Fund (ESF).

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Editor's notes:

Mr Akers is one of Europe's leading practitioners of intellectual property (IP) law, representing clients in patent, trademark and design issues in both the UK and the EU. For a number of years he was a partner at one of the world's most respected international IP firms, acting for major companies in several different countries. He set up his own business in 2004.

Mr Ziar, who was born in Penzance, went to school and college in Truro then moved to East Anglia to study law.

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Clare Morgan
Media Relations Manager
Objective One Partnership Office
Castle House
Pydar Street
Truro TR1 2UD
Mobile: 07973 813647
Telephone: 01872 223439

cmorgan@cornwall.gov.uk

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