For the second time in nine years, the International Trademark Association (INTA) will host the world’s largest and most widely attended trademark event in Seattle, Washington, from May 19 to May 23. INTA’s Annual Meeting will bring together more than 10,500 trademark practitioners and other intellectual property (IP) professionals from 150+ countries to Seattle for this historic 140th Annual Meeting.

On May 20, Neil Lindsay, Vice President of Global Marketing, Prime & Engagement at Amazon.com, Inc., will give the keynote address at the Opening Ceremonies. Mr. Lindsay has built cross-category and cross-channel programs to drive demand, accelerate engagement, and build a brand for Amazon’s consumer business worldwide. In a fireside chat format, he will share with attendees significant lessons learned and insights from his career.

“From clean technology to global health, and from startups to many of the world’s top global brands, Seattle is undeniably an epicenter of innovation,” said INTA President Tish Berard. “We are thrilled to be able to anchor our discussions about critical issues that impact brands, such as the rise in counterfeiting and the importance of trademark protection, in a city that can teach us so much about what it takes to succeed.”

In addition, she said, “The Annual Meeting offers an unparalleled opportunity for a free-flowing exchange of ideas on best practices and benchmarking, as well as an exceptional forum for networking.” Ms. Berard also will address the attendees at the Opening Ceremonies.

Since INTA’s last Annual Meeting in Seattle in 2009, attendance at this annual gathering has increased significantly, by more than 3,000 professionals from around the world. It is no coincidence that INTA is once again drawn to Seattle. As Seattle’s thriving business climate continues to evolve, the greater Seattle area is ranked as a global startup hub and a leader in information and communications technology.

The Annual Meeting, which is being held at the Washington State Convention Center, will draw trademark and other IP professionals from major corporations and law firms, entrepreneurs, small and medium-sized enterprises, service providers, and government officials, including high-level officials from national, regional, and international IP offices. Collectively, INTA members contribute almost US $12 trillion to global gross domestic product (GDP) annually. For comparison, the 2016 annual GDP of the top three markets was $11.2 trillion (China), $16.4 trillion (European Union), and $18.6 trillion (United States).

The Annual Meeting programming will cover timely topics, such as strategies for battling counterfeit goods in the global marketplace—including enforcement against counterfeiters of sports merchandise; IP issues in the era of artificial intelligence and other innovations; and influencer marketing insights into return on investment. In addition, speakers will explore major international issues, such as Brexit and its impact on various IP rights, and privacy and data protection compliance in light of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation, which takes effect this month.

The extensive program offers more than 300 educational opportunities, an expansive Exhibition Hall, and networking opportunities at more than 15 official receptions, including a concert by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts and a Grand Finale at the 74-acre Seattle Center.

In conjunction with this event, INTA will sponsor several corporate social responsibility initiatives, including collaborating with Dress for Success Seattle to collect professional clothing items for women seeking employment.

To learn more and to register for the 2018 Annual Meeting, visit www.inta.org/2018AM.