Managing Director, Intellectual Property
Director, Dispute Resolution
Head, Healthcare & Life Sciences
- LL.B. (Hons), National University of Singapore
- Admitted to the Singapore Bar (1992)
Tony is the Managing Director of Drew & Napier’s Intellectual Property department, and a Director in its Dispute Resolution department. He also heads Drew & Napier’s Healthcare & Life Sciences Practice. Tony is currently representing leading biotech and pharmaceutical companies such as Sanofi-Aventis and Novartis; government statutory boards such as Sentosa Development Corporation, and Health Promotion Board; as well as listed companies such as PT Bayan Resources Tbk and Manhattan Resources Ltd.
Tony is a litigator with an active court practice as an advocate. He has acted as lead counsel in many complex matters, including numerous patent infringement cases. He is experienced in intellectual property litigation and enforcement including patent, trade mark, and copyright litigation. His civil and commercial litigation practice includes banking litigation and contract disputes.
Tony was appointed by the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) as an IP Adjudicator to hear disputes for a two-year term from April 2019. He is also the President of the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI) – Singapore Group, a member of the Law Society’s Inquiry Committee and Disciplinary Tribunal, and a member of the Examination Board at IPOS for registered patent agents.
As a testament to his expertise in the field, Tony co-authored the Singapore chapter of Global Pharmacovigilance Laws & Regulations: The Essential Reference, which has been described as a “ground-breaking book” and a “landmark guide” published by the US based Food and Drug Law Institute. He was also invited to co-author the Singapore chapter of the inaugural Patent Enforcement in the UK and Trans-Pacific Countries published by Globe Law and Business. The book is an essential guide for private practitioners, in-house lawyers and other professional in the Trans-Pacific region. Tony also co-wrote the the Singapore section of the Chapter on Countries with Historical Connections with UK Registered Designs in Russell-Clarke & Howe on Industrial Designs, 10th Edition, Sweet & Maxwell, 2022.
Under his guidance and leadership, Drew & Napier clinched double wins at the Managing IP Asia-Pacific Awards 2022, winning both the Singapore Trademark Contentious Firm of the Year and Singapore Trademark Prosecution Firm of the Year.
Tony has been involved in many high profile matters. Here are just a few recent cases:
- Acted as an IP Adjudicator at the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore to adjudicate a significant Trade Mark matter involving two well-known watchmakers. In Rolex S.A. v FMTM Distribution Ltd  SGIPOS 6, Rolex S.A’s opposition against an Application Mark filed by the Franck Muller Group was allowed on grounds of confusing similarity and passing off under the Trade Marks Act. As the opposition was successful, registration of the Application Mark was refused.
- Representing IIa Technologies Pte Ltd, an industry leader in state-of-the-art lab grown diamond technology, in a patent infringement suit commenced by Element Six Technologies Ltd, a subsidiary of the De Beers Group, in HC/Suit No. 26/2016, CA 41/2020 and CA 96/2020, including a counterclaim by IIa Technologies Pte Ltd to revoke Element Six Technologies Ltd’s patents in the Singapore High Court. The matter is now pending the Court of Appeal’s decision in CA 41 and CA 96.
- Acting as lead counsel representing Novartis AG and Novartis (Singapore) Pte Ltd in an ongoing patent infringement action (HC/S 206/2022) involving a patent in relation to the drug with the active ingredients valsartan and sacubitril under the brand name “ENTRESTO”.
- Acting as lead counsel for Sums Resource Pte Ltd and Dato Low Tuck Kwong in an ongoing dispute in HC/S 736/2021 involving issues of contract law, misrepresentation and unjust enrichment. The dispute relates to an undersea internet cable network connecting Singapore and Indonesia.
- Acted as lead counsel for Tanaka Electronics Singapore (Pte.) Ltd. in a Singapore High Court patent infringement action in Singapore HC/Suit No. 606/2020 in which we defended the patent infringement action. The action was part of the global patent litigation dispute with Nippon Steel Chemical & Material Co., Ltd. and Nippon Micrometal Corporation. Tanaka Electronic Singapore (Pte.) Ltd. owns a manufacturing facility in Singapore manufacturing bonding wires for semiconductors. Nippon Steel alleged that Tanaka Electronics Singapore (Pte.) Ltd. infringed Singapore Patent No. 2010038305 and prayed for, amongst others, an injunction. Tanaka Electronic Singapore (Pte.) Ltd. has denied infringement and has put in issue the validity of the asserted patent claims. The Singapore action has since been discontinued.
Intellectual Property 2023 – Band 1 for 5 consecutive years; Band 2 for 10 consecutive years (2009-2018)
“Tony is the person to have on complex IP litigation. He thinks globally but acts locally, and thoroughly considers all options when approaching litigation to achieve the client’s goals in the most efficient and effective way possible.”
"Tony is a very experienced, client-oriented lawyer. He is very pleasant and commercially minded. He will find creative solutions to complex issues and with a quick response time."
"Tony is the best patent litigator I have come across in Singapore. His can-do attitude and creative thinking adds enormous value."
“Tony is an esteemed practitioner who frequently represents clients in IP litigation at the appellate stages. He has experience working on royalties disputes, advising a range of domestic and multinational clients.”
Sources say that “You can take comfort knowing that Tony is at the wheel when driving forward your litigation in unchartered legal landscapes.”
Tony is "a seasoned patent litigator".
“He quickly understands complex IP issues and is able to convey them in a way that is easy to understand,” adding: “He understands the client's needs and delivers results that meet the company's strategy and goals. He is also very creative and thinks outside the box.”
“He is extremely hands-on, clear in his thinking, has foresight and draws a lot of perspective from his past experience to evaluate the next steps,” “…with Tony we are well informed, and he always walks in with a sound plan which makes it easy to make an informed decision.”
“[Tony] leverages on his strong healthcare and life sciences sector expertise and regularly acts for major pharmaceutical clients in notable patent infringement disputes.”
A very confident individual who always stays on top of the situation.”
The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific
Intellectual Property 2023 – Hall of Fame for 4 consecutive years; Leading individual for 10 consecutive years (2011-2020)
Dispute Resolution 2018 – Recommended lawyer
“Among all the lawyers whom I have worked with, Tony Yeo is the most knowledgeable and experienced lawyer I have met so far. He is very sharp and decisive and always gives me very good advice. His analysis of the cases and anticipation of the reaction from our opponents are always accurate and spot on.”
“Tony Yeo is sharp and appropriately aggressive lawyer whom you will want on your side. Possessing good commercial sense and great depth of knowledge as subject matter experts, he will be able to value-add by strategising approaches for the best outcomes. First-class lawyer.”
“Tony Yeo is an absolutely first-class litigator. Amazing in the court room. He is not only able to provide high-level strategic advice, but is able to also zoom in and pick up on the minute details. Great depth of knowledge.”
Sources say that Tony is “a fantastic strategist and a great litigator”
“Diligent, sound in judgment and pragmatic in approach”
“One of the foremost lawyers in Drew & Napier’s excellent litigation practice with in-depth knowledge of IP-related issues”
Asian Legal Business
Asia Top 15 IP Lawyers 2022 – Named as one of Asia's top 15 IP lawyers for 2 consecutive years
Voted as IP Star 2022 – Trade mark Star for 9 consecutive years; Patent Star for 9 consecutive years
“Tony is responsive, quick thinking and highly practical in his advice.”
“First class service and quality work”
“Tony [Yeo] is charming, knowledgeable, and has a knack of explaining things simply and in the context of the overall strategy. He is an effective litigator and is incisive in cross-examinations."
asialaw Leading Lawyers
Intellectual Property 2023 – Elite Practitioner for 6 consecutive years
Dispute Resolution 2017-2018 – Market-Leading Lawyer for 2 consecutive years
“Tony Yeo quickly grasps the highly technical and legal issues presented to him and distils them into something which is easy to understand. He has a great attention to detail and hones in on the chink in the armour to bring the greatest outcome for the client.”
“He made the way forward very clear.”
“Supportive and gives clear explanations.”
“Creative and attentive to details.”
“Very warm and approachable. Responsible with sound legal advice.”
“Tony is truly an excellent lawyer. When he understands the issue, he comes up with creative solutions from his depth of knowledge in IP and general law. He is the person to go to when you have a high-value complex IP case. You know you are in safe hands with Tony.”
Tony Yeo is recommended by his client for his “great depth of knowledge. Very savvy. Fantastic litigator.”
Client feedback (2017): “Market-leading lawyer Tony Yeo’s “strategic thinking, honesty and timely responsiveness”… (is) prized by clients.”
Who’s Who Legal
Thought Leaders Guide: Life Sciences - Patent Litigation 2022 – Global Elite Thought Leader for 2 consecutive years
Global Guide: Life Sciences: Patent Litigation 2022 – Recommended Lawyer; Global Elite Thought Leader (2020 to 2021)
Global Guide: Life Sciences 2022 – Leading Lawyer for 12 consecutive years; Recommended for Patent Litigation, and Regulatory; Recommended for Product Liability (2011 to 2021)
Global Guide: IP - Patents 2022 – Leading Lawyer for 9 consecutive years
Global Guide: IP - Trademarks 2022 – Leading Lawyer for 6 consecutive years
National Guide: Southeast Asia - Life Sciences 2022 – Leading Lawyer for 2 consecutive years
National Guide: Southeast Asia - Patents 2022 – Leading Lawyer for 2 consecutive years
National Guide: Southeast Asia - Trademarks 2022 – Leading Lawyer for 2 consecutive years
Tony Yeo draws noteworthy plaudits from sources, who highlight his “depth of knowledge about IP subject matters” and his “impressive commercial mind.”
“Tony Yeo has amassed substantial experience advising on patent infringement and litigation across the region.”
“Tony Yeo is highly sought after by listed biotech and pharmaceutical corporates and government boards for his first-rate regulatory advice.”
“Tony Yeo enjoys a sterling reputation among peers in IP litigation and is described by sources as “a formidable and very well-regarded litigator in the IP field”.”
Tony Yeo has “impressive width and depth of knowledge” and provides “practical solutions while considering client’s interests at the same time”.
“Tony Yeo is an authority in the sector known for his extensive experience representing pharmaceutical and biotech companies in complex litigation and enforcements.”
“Tony Yeo is a standout patent litigator renowned for his precise approach and careful planning in complex IP disputes.”
Tony Yeo is “an excellent IP litigator” with a strong reputation for his top-tier work in the life sciences.
Tony Yeo is held to be a “subject matter expert” who is “meticulous and strategic in his approach” to trademark issues.
Tony Yeo of Drew & Napier is a “seasoned litigator” who “stands out among the pack”. Clients commend him for being “highly engaged and hardworking” and for always “focusing on the best interest of clients”.
“Tony Yeo is recommended across our life sciences chapters for his wide-ranging expertise in the area.”
Clients say Tony is a “formidable litigator” who is “extremely knowledgeable in IP matters”. He impresses with his “ability to balance commercial considerations with effective legal strategies”.
Benchmark Litigation Asia-Pacific
Intellectual Property 2022 – Litigation Star for 4 consecutive years
“Excellent knowledge and advice, ability to represent the client's interests, considers the practicality of advice and whether it can be implemented with a favourable outcome to the client. Good solutions. Accessible to the client even when busy, responsible. Accepts client feedback.”
“Tony is responsive, commercially aware and a skilled advocate”
World Trademark Review 1000
Enforcement and Litigation 2023 – Gold band for 4 consecutive years; Recommended individual (2018 and 2019)
“Tony is just brilliantly smart and stands out for his industry knowledge and commercial acumen.”
“Tony is creative in the way he approaches matters and digs into the details of cases. In terms of his work product, service and advice, he is way ahead of the pack in Singapore.”
Sources commend Tony’s “efficient delivery” of “well-informed” strategies.
Tony Yeo is a “first-rate litigator who navigates clients through the minefields of IP management without a hitch”.
World Trademark Review Global Leaders 2021 edition
Identified as one of Singapore’s foremost trademark experts for 2 consecutive years
IAM Patent 1000
Litigation 2022 – Gold band for 4 consecutive years; Recommended lawyer for 5 consecutive years (2014 - 2018)
“Tony is a true master of patent litigation and a much sought-after counsel in the contentious patent space.”
“Tony has strong industry knowledge, good business acumen and has an excellent winning track record in prominent IP litigation.”
“Polished litigator Tony Yeo is highly respected in the Singapore legal community.”
“A gifted and tenacious litigator”
“I sleep well at night knowing that Tony Yeo is at the wheel on Singapore IP matters.”
“He has bags of experience and a great instinct, which allows him to know exactly where to direct his efforts in the litigation process to achieve the best results. Added to that, Tony is an extremely hard worker and is dedicated to his clients. He is my number one go-to counsel in Singapore.”
“Tony provides sage IP advice on complex IP matters which are part of global litigation strategies. I trust his advice and he always brings fresh ideas and strategies to the table.”
The shining gem in the ensemble is Tony Yeo. “One of the most respected litigators in town”, the star player recently joined other distinguished IP legal experts on the IPOS IP Adjudicators Panel.
“Managing director of intellectual property Tony Yeo is most at home when resolving intricate patent disputes on behalf of major clients in the healthcare and life sciences arenas. Renowned for his silver-tongued advocacy, Yeo is a master of cross-border and technically advanced patent infringement suits.”
“Famed for its strength in disputes, the firm boasts no shortage of star litigators – and Tony Yeo stands out among them. A courtroom sharpshooter with over 25 years’ experience in patent litigation…”
Tony Yeo [is] “one of the most outstanding IP litigators in Southeast Asia”; “Tony has all the characteristics that make up the perfect outside counsel; he understands your business needs and goals, and precisely tailors his advice and strategy to meet these. Extremely resourceful, he thinks outside the box while delivering clear and direct advice that enables quick decisions to be made.”
Life sciences captain Tony Yeo “keeps competitors on their toes” in hotly contested disputes between big pharma combatants.
“Clients adore the highly intelligent Tony Yeo; his facility for grasping the technicalities of a case means that he always quickly addresses the real problem.”
IAM Global Leaders 2022 edition
Identified as one of Singapore’s foremost patent experts for 2 consecutive years
IAM Strategy 300: The World's Leading IP Strategists 2022
Named as one of the preeminent IP strategists in the world for 2 consecutive years
Asia IP Experts
Identified as a leading IP lawyer in Singapore in 2022 for 2 consecutive years
IP Enforcement, Patents, and Litigation 2016-2018 – Leading Individual for 3 consecutive years
Pharma & Biotech 2013-2018 – Leading Individual for 6 consecutive years
Best Lawyers International: Singapore
Litigation 2023 – Endorsed individual
Asia Business Law Journal
Identified as one of Singapore’s Top 100 lawyers in 2019 and 2023 editions
World IP Review
Intellectual Property 2017 – Leading Practitioner
ILO Client Choice Awards
Winner of the Singapore Healthcare & Life Sciences Award in 2013
- President, International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI) – Singapore Group
- IP Adjudicator at the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) from April 2019 for a two-year term
- Assessor, Panel of Assessors for COVID-19 Temporary Relief, Ministry of Law
- Honorary legal counsel, Orchard Road Business Association (ORBA)
- Honorary legal counsel, Singapore Advertisers Association
- Member, Singapore Patent Agents Examination Board at IPOS
- Member, Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) Disciplinary Committee
- Member, Supreme Court Pleadings Precedent Selection Committee - Intellectual Property
- Member, Law Society’s Inquiry Panel and Disciplinary Tribunal
- Member, Asian Patent Attorneys Association
- Member, International Trademark Association
- The Singapore chapter of Patent Litigation Country Comparative Guide, The Legal 500, 2020, 2021 and 2022
- The Singapore chapter of Patents, Lexology Getting The Deal Through, 2023
- Practical Law’s Practice Note on Scope of Patent Protection (Singapore), Thomson Reuters, 2022
- Practical Law’s Practice Note on Terminating Licences of IP Rights (Singapore), Thomson Reuters, 2022
- The Brunei chapter of Katzarov’s Manual on Industrial Property, Katzarov, 2021 and 2022
- The Singapore chapter of Manual IP, Kluwer IP Law, 2022
- The Singapore chapter of Life Sciences, Chambers Global Practice Guides, 2020, 2021 and 2022
- The Singapore section of the Chapter on Countries with Historical Connections with UK Registered Designs in Russell-Clarke & Howe on Industrial Designs, 10th Edition, Sweet & Maxwell, 2022
- The Singapore chapter of Life Sciences, Lexology Getting the Deal Through, 2021 and 2022
- Chapter LIV of Atkin's Court Forms Singapore - Intellectual Property - Patents and Inventions, LexisNexis, 2021
- The Singapore chapter of Patent Enforcement in the UK and Trans-Pacific Countries, Globe Law and Business, 2021
- “Regular blocking injunction or dynamic injunction?” in Asia IP May 2021
- The Brunei Chapter of Manual for the Handling of Applications for Patents, Designs and Trade Marks Throughout the World, Kluwer IP International, 2021
- “Supreme Court of Singapore adds Appellate Division for hearing of civil appeals” in Asia IP January 2021
- The Singapore chapter of Life Sciences, Getting the Deal Through, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2020
- The Singapore chapter of Practical Law Company – Life Sciences Global Guide 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2020 and 2021
- “Brand Wars: The Rise of Grey Product” in Asia IP January 2020
- “Developments in Singapore’s Healthcare Regulatory Landscape” in Asian Legal Business November 2013
- The Singapore chapter of “Global Pharmacovigilance Laws & Regulations: The Essential Reference” published by the Food & Drug Law Institute, which has been described as a “groundbreaking book” and a “landmark guide”
- “Legislating medical devices in Singapore” in Financier Worldwide: Biotechnology & Life Sciences e- Book 2010