Dr Jim Adams

Founder and Patent Attorney

Jim Adams has an honours degree in Physics from the University or Manchester and a PhD in Nanoelectronics from the University of Glasgow. Jim is a UK Chartered Patent Attorney, a European Patent Attorney and a European Trademark and Design Attorney.

For his A-level project he wrote a Z80 disassembler in machine code. While an undergraduate, he developed accounts and stock control software. His PhD and subsequent research work focussed on fabrication and testing of nanometre-scale transistors and other very small structures. At Motorola Jim managed a semiconductor product analysis laboratory, having worked as a yield improvement engineer on a variety of products including System on Chip (SoC) devices, smartcards and microcontrollers. In 2001, Jim was introduced to the patent profession when he needed a patent attorney to protect his own software invention. Jim founded Lean IP in 2014, applying lean practices to patent attorney services for the benefit of his clients. Jim also founded Adams Black in 2019 with Simon Black.


Jim’s experience includes: IP audits, IP strategy advice, IP portfolio management, patent drafting, infringement opinions, patentability opinions, UK/EP/PCT/Worldwide patent filing and prosecution, EPO Oral Proceedings in examination and oppositions, patent novelty searches, patent freedom to operate searches, defining operating procedures for invention review and capture, advising on IP ownership and compliance with supplier agreements.

Dr Xu Gu

Patent Scientist

Xu received an MSc in advanced computing science and a PhD in computational biology from the University of Glasgow. Her PhD and research work was focused on mathematical modelling of biological systems, in particular on metabolism in Trypanosoma brucei, the parasite that causes African Sleeping Sickness. Xu’s subsequent research, carried out at the MRC Human Genetics Unit in Edinburgh, was on image processing and 3D geometric modelling of the heart. While at the MRC she won funding from the MRC Centenary Award to study and model the development and malformations of the vertebrate limb.

Xu’s aim is to help our clients at the leading edge of innovation secure protection and value from their inventions. As a native speaker of Mandarin Chinese, Xu is in an excellent position to assist Chinese clients in securing protection for their inventions in the West.

Simon Black


Simon Black has an Honours Degree in Physics with Microelectronics and a Masters Degree in Biological Nuclear Magnetic Resonance and Spectroscopy from the University of Dundee. Simon is a Chartered Patent Attorney and a European Trade Mark and Design Attorney.

Simon’s career began in the Patents Department at British Nuclear Fuels plc in 1997, after which he moved into private practice in Scotland. He became a Director of a firm of patent attorneys in 2005, then set up Black & associates in 2010 as a boutique IP Practice.

Simon advises a wide range of clients from large multinational companies in the engineering, finance and electronics industries to Universities and technology startups. Simon works across a range of technologies including Mechanical Engineering, Renewable Energy, Cleantech, Computer Software, Financial Services Software, Lasers, Medical Devices, Offshore Engineering, Downhole Tools, Bicycle Gears and Computer Modelling.

Specific areas of legal expertise, across a broad range of technical subject matter, include: IP Audits, IP Strategy Advice, IP Portfolio Management, Infringement Risk Assessments, Competitor Analyses and Surveillance, Patent Drafting, UK/EP/PCT/Worldwide patent filing and prosecution, Patentability Opinions and UK Patent Office Hearings in business methods and computer software, experience in educating inventors and management, patent novelty searches and patent validity searches.

LeanIP® is a trading name of Lean IP Ltd, registered in Scotland SC476175. Registered address: First Floor, 9 George Square, Glasgow, Scotland, G2 1QQ. VAT number GB 185 2881 74.

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