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Principal Legal Counsel Intellectual Property

Date: 12-Mar-2023

Location: Farnborough, England, GB

Company: QinetiQ

Role Purpose

To provide expert intellectual property (IP) legal advice and services to the QinetiQ Group Sectors.


QinetiQ has technical expertise and knowledge in technologies predominantly used in the defence, aerospace and security markets, both in the UK and internationally.  Part of QinetiQ’s business model is the creation, protection and exploitation of IP in its areas of technical expertise.  This role will principally support the exploitation, through licensing and partnering, of QinetiQ’s IP; and by providing advice and support regarding QinetiQ’s IP exploitation strategy.


This role will involve maintaining effective relationships with internal business customers and functional colleagues promoting the value of the Group’s Legal & IP team.


Key Accountabilities

  • Delivering comprehensive and high-quality legal services, across the QinetiQ Group businesses, covering a broad range of IP matters.
  • Drafting, reviewing and negotiating licences, assignments and other agreements relating to technology transfer and IP exploitation.
  • Drafting and negotiating agreements related to IP generation, including R&D collaboration agreements.
  • Advising on IP terms in customer and supplier agreements, and IP disputes.
  • Leading on the provision of legal advice relating to the registration, maintenance and exploitation of the QinetiQ trademark portfolio.
  • Leading on and collaborating with the in house patent counsel to provide legal advice on due diligence exercises in relation to technology to be transferred.
  • Collaborating with the Group Head of Legal Services and patent counsel supporting on the development and implementation of appropriate processes and procedures for efficient technology transfer, IP protection and exploitation.
  • Proactively developing and maintaining effective relationships with internal clients and external customers and licensees of the business; and promoting the value of both the Legal & IP function and IP creation and protection by the business.
  • Advising on new and forthcoming legislation and regulations relevant to IP law; identifying and leading on the provision of IP legal training needs for the business and opportunities for process improvements. 
  • Supporting the business by providing legal advice and services as necessary to help our business meet its sales and delivery targets in relation to IP exploitation and technology transfer.

Key Capabilities/Knowledge

  • Sound judgment and the ability to manage busy workloads to meet challenging deadlines; and to close deals in order to meet business needs.
  • An ability to understand, and work effectively, in a complex organisation, efficiently managing multiple work streams and competing priorities.
  • Strong communication, interpersonal and relationship building skills.
  • Excellent influencing and negotiating skills with high levels of commercial acumen.
  • Strong transactional management skills.
  • Training and mentoring skills.
  • A balanced and pragmatic approach to risk management, demonstrating good commercial judgment.

Experience & Qualifications

  • UK or Commonwealth qualified solicitor, barrister or ILEX or equivalent qualification  (8 plus years PQE, as a guide to level of experience required by the role)
  • Experience in a legal practice, or in-house, in contract law, IP law and commercial law with a full understanding of technology transfer concepts, tools and principles.
  • Demonstrable experience in drafting and negotiating IP licences and other technology transfer contracts.
  • Experience of managing the registration and protection of trademarks.
  • Experience of defence industry contracting is desirable but not mandatory



Please note that all applicants must be eligible for SC clearance as a minimum.

UKSV National Security Vetting Solution: guidance for applicants - GOV.UK (

Why join QinetiQ?

As we continue to grow into new markets around the world, there’s never been a more exciting time to join QinetiQ. The formula for success is our appetite for innovation and having the courage to take on a wide variety of complex challenges.

You’ll experience a unique working environment where teams from different backgrounds, disciplines and experience enjoy collaborating widely and openly as we undertake this exciting and rewarding journey. Through effective teamwork, and pulling together, you’ll get to experience what happens when we all share different perspectives, blend disciplines, and link technologies; constantly discovering new ways of solving complex problems in an diverse and inclusive environment where you can be authentic, feel valued and realise your full potential. Read more about our diverse and inclusive workplace culture here.  

Joining QinetiQ offers you an opportunity to work on a broad range of interesting defence-based projects with vast career progression across a global organisation in addition to competitive personal and professional benefits.  You’ll receive a highly competitive salary and benefits package: our basic salaries are very attractive as we constantly review what’s happening in the market. The range of benefits that we offer include, adaptive and flexible working, generous holiday entitlements, Health Cash Plan, Private Medical Insurance and Dental Insurance and much more. 

About QinetiQ

As a company of over 6,000 dedicated professionals, we are a world-centre of excellence in research and development and act as a catalyst for fast-track innovation, offering outstanding experimentation facilities, and technical, engineering and scientific expertise. QinetiQ is made up of dedicated experts in defence, aerospace, security and related markets, all working together to explore new ways of protecting what matters most. Being part of QinetiQ means being central to the safety and security of the world around us. Partnering with our customers, we help to save lives; reduce risks to society; and maintain the global infrastructure on which we all depend. Come and find out how you can play a role.

Please note that many roles in QinetiQ are subject to national security vetting. Applicants that already hold the appropriate level of vetting may be able to transfer it upon appointment, subject to approval. A number of roles are also subject to restrictions on access to information that mean factors such as nationality, previous nationalities held and the country in which you were born may have an effect on the roles that you can be employed in.