Battistelli succeeds António Campinos, who is also the current executive director of the EU IP Office and president elect of the EPO. Campinos will begin his five-year term at the EPO on 1 July 2018.
Battistelli was elected president of the EPO in 2010 for a five-year term, which was extended for three years in June 2014.
While Battistelli has overseen a record number of patent grants at the EPO, his rule hasn’t been without criticism and he has faced criticism, both from the Staff Union of the EPO (SUEPO) and in the media.
A source close to SUEPO noted that no EPO president had ever been appointed at the CEIPI during their mandate. The source said that the union was also concerned that the EPO’s administrative council may not have been duly informed of this move prior the official communication by the CEIPI.
The source said: “At this stage it is unclear if this may (or not) raise new ethical or even legal problems for the Council.”
The source pointed out that the move could have been made to keep Battistelli “active”, to make him a “credible candidate” for president of the Unified Patent Court when it comes into effect.