Locke Lord, Edwards Wildman Approve Combination; Form ‘Top 50’ AmLaw Firm of 1,000 Lawyers, 23 Offices

02 Dec, 2014

Partners at Locke Lord LLP and Edwards Wildman Palmer LLP have approved combining the two firms effective January 10, 2015, creating a firm of approximately 1,000 lawyers working from 23 offices that can better meet clients’ needs around the world.

The new Firm, which will become Locke Lord Edwards LLP, will have gross revenues of approximately $675 million, placing it among the 50 largest firms in The American Lawyer’s “AmLaw 100” annual rankings of top U.S. law firms. Jerry Clements will serve as Chair of the combined Firm. Alan Levin, who currently serves as Managing Partner of Edwards Wildman, along with Locke Lord’s Dan Schlessinger and Bill Swanstrom, will serve as the three Vice Chairs of Locke Lord Edwards.

In addition to a greatly enhanced domestic and global footprint, Locke Lord Edwards will have a stronger team of lawyers with the ability to represent private equity and venture capital clients across a broad spectrum of industries including energy, telecommunications, technology, real estate, health care and life sciences. The combined Firm will also experience a significant increase in the depth of its insurance, reinsurance, intellectual property, financial institutions and fund formation teams

“This combination will enhance our position in the top tier of U.S. law firms and significantly strengthen our position and product offerings in the middle market,” Clements said. “It will allow us to brand that identity in the global marketplace with a major presence in the Northeast and a stronger footprint in the Midwest, West Coast and Southeast regions of the United States, as well as in Asia.

“This combination appropriately propels us into the future with an exceptionally fine group of lawyers in important practice areas, sectors and geographic areas where we want and need to be in order to best serve our clients. We share the same vision and strategy, and now will work together across all markets,” she said.

In the Northeast, Locke Lord Edwards will have a significant operation in Boston with approximately 150 lawyers, as well as offices in Hartford and Stamford, Connecticut; Providence, Rhode Island; and Morristown, New Jersey. Also, the combined Firm will significantly expand its Chicago, New York and Washington, D.C. offices; increase its visibility in California with offices in Irvine (Orange County), Los Angeles, San Francisco and Sacramento; and expand in the Southeast with offices in Atlanta, Miami and West Palm Beach.

Internationally, the combination will strengthen the Firm’s presence in Asia with offices in Hong Kong, Istanbul and Tokyo. London will continue to be an important focus of the combined Firm and one with anticipated growth as a gateway to international business.

“Locke Lord Edwards will be in a stronger position nationally and globally to represent our clients’ interests – and more aggressively compete for clients — across a broad spectrum of industries in an increasingly complex global marketplace,” Levin said. “We are excited to bring our two firms together in this type of platform and excited for what the future holds not only for our lawyers but especially for our clients.”

In addition to Clements, Levin, Schlessinger and Swanstrom, other members of the combined Firm’s Executive Committee will be Nick DiGiovanni, Michael Gaertner, Janis Loegering, Graham Spitz, David Taylor and Tom Yoxall from the Locke Lord side; and Jeffrey Hsi, Walter St. Onge, Heather Stone, George Ticknor and Jonathan Young from the Edwards Wildman side.

Locke Lord Edwards will have offices in Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Hartford, Hong Kong, Houston, Istanbul, London, Los Angeles, Miami, Morristown (New Jersey), New Orleans, New York, Orange County (California), Providence (Rhode Island), Sacramento (California), San Francisco, Stamford (Connecticut), Tokyo, Washington, D.C. and West Palm Beach (Florida).

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