Rouses wants to be Willoughbys in UK

NICHE intellectual property firm Rouse & Co is changing its UK name to Willoughby & Partners to avoid confusion with its intellectual property enforcement business in Europe, China and Hong Kong.

The firm's international work was previously done under two names: Rouse & Co in Europe and New China Consultants in China and Hong Kong. To avoid client confusion, its operations have now been named Rouse & Co International, a limited company.

Under Law Society rules, firms cannot give the same name to a separate business so the solicitor partnership in the UK has taken the name of partner Tony Willoughby, a leading IP litigator who joined the from Herbert Smith in September 1994.

Peter Rouse, who will stay managing partner of Will-oughby & Partners and chair of the international business, said: “We have been working toward these changes for a long time. Our clients are with us.”