Network Firm News
Merger Mania Continued During 2002
The following is a summary of events reported in Hildebrandt Headlines from various sources during 2002. It is not intended to be a complete listing of events, but rather a retrospective look at developments in the legal industry for the year.
Mergers and Acquisitions
More than 80 law firm mergers and acquisitions worldwide were reported in Hildebrandt Headlines in 2002. Some of the notable unions are listed below.
DOMESTIC (mergers of firms from within the same country)
-- Borden Ladner Gervais, Calgary acquired 16-lawyer Armstrong Perkins Hudson, the largest securities law boutique in Western Canada
-- The former Italian member firm of Andersen Legal, Andersen Legal-Studio di Consulenza, merged with Ernst & Young's local firm, Studio Legale Tributario, creating Italy's largest firm with more than 300 lawyers.
-- Asahi Law Offices and Komatsu Koma & Nishikawa merged to create a 100-lawyer firm, the country's third largest
-- Stephenson Harwood acquired Sinclair Roche & Temperley, creating a firm of over 100 partners
-- Reed Smith announced plans to merge with California firm Crosby Heafey Roach & May, creating a firm of nearly 1,000 lawyers, effective January 1, 2003.
-- Boston's Bingham Dana and San Francisco s McCutchen Doyle Brown & Enersen merged to create Bingham McCutchen, a firm of over 800 lawyers.
-- St. Louis firm Bryan Cave merged with New York s 170-attorney Robinson Silverman Pearce Aronsohn & Berman, creating a firm of more than 800 attorneys.
– Chicago firm Katten Muchin Zavis merged with New York firm Rosenman & Colin, forming KMZ Rosenman, a firm of over 600 attorneys.
-- Hogan & Hartson merged with New York s Squadron Ellenoff Plesent & Sheinfeld, adding over 100 attorneys to its ranks.
-- Los Angeles-based O Melveny & Myers acquired New York private equity specialists O'Sullivan, adding nearly 100 attorneys to its New York office.
-- Washington, DC s McKenna & Cuneo merged with Atlanta s Long Aldridge & Norman, creating McKenna Long & Aldridge, a 376-lawyer firm.
-- Piper Rudnick acquired 85-lawyer Verner Liipfert Bernhard McPherson and Hand.
-- Adams and Reese announced that it will merge with Lange Simpson Robinson & Somerville, with 300 attorneys it will be the largest law firm in Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi, effective January 1, 2003.
-- Holland & Knight merged with 85-lawyer Chicago firm McBride Baker & Coles, giving it 160 lawyers in the Chicago area.
-- Chicago-based Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal merged with 55-lawyer New York firm RubinBaum.
-- Boston s Brown Rudnick Freed & Gesmer acquired 35-lawyer New York bankruptcy boutique Berlack Israels & Liberman.
In addition, larger rivals acquired five IP boutiques:
-- Dorsey & Whitney acquired San Francisco s 37-lawyer Flehr Hohbach Test Albritton & Herbert.
-- The Chicago office of Greenberg Traurig acquired 10-lawyer Dick & Harris New Jersey firm Gibbons Del Deo Dolan Griffinger & Vecchione acquired 8-lawyer Manhattan firm Corbin & Gittes.
-- Akron, Ohio firm Brouse McDowell acquired 7-lawyer Emerson & Skeriotis
-- Cleveland firm Fay Sharpe Fagan Minnich & McKee acquired 5-lawyer local firm Vickers Daniels & Young.
Also, firm opened approximately twenty-five new branch offices in 2002.
The US city with the most new offices was San Francisco:
-- Kirkland & Ellis
-- Howrey Simon Arnold & White
-- Altheimer & Gray
-- Holme Roberts & Owen
-- Clifford Chance
Three firms opened offices in Washington, DC:
-- Merchant & Gould
-- Fish & Neave
-- Blackwell Sanders
Two firms opened offices in Houston:
-- Chadbourne & Parke
-- Sutherland Asbill
At least eight firms closed branch offices in 2002:
-- Skjerven Morrill, Newport Beach and Austin
-- Venture Law Group, San Francisco
-- Sidley Austin Brown & Wood, Seattle
-- Buchanan Ingersoll, Reston, VA
-- Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis, Atlanta
-- Heller Ehrman White & McAuliffe, Gaithersburg, MD
-- Brown & Bain, Tucson
-- Perkins Coie, Spokane, WA