Duane Morris and Hancock Rothert & Bunshoft to Merge
October 12, 2005
Duane Morris to substantially expand its California presence
PHILADELPHIA, SAN FRANCISCO, OCTOBER 12 - Duane Morris LLP and Hancock Rothert & Bunshoft LLP announced today that the two firms have entered into a definitive agreement to merge under the name of Duane Morris. The merger will be effective January 1, 2006.
With the addition of 64 Hancock lawyers, Duane Morris will have more than 600 lawyers in 19 offices; 120 of those lawyers will be in California. The firm is projected to generate revenue approaching $350 million in 2006. With this merger, Duane Morris will have one of the most prominent insurance coverage practices in the United States, with more than 100 lawyers involved in insurance coverage work.
"In addition to an excellent insurance coverage practice, Hancock has outstanding litigators with a strong presence in such areas as commercial litigation, technology, professional liability, construction, appellate, healthcare and product liability," said Sheldon Bonovitz, Chairman of Duane Morris. "The merger will provide the opportunity to offer a full range of legal services to Hancock's client base in areas other than litigation and also will provide Duane Morris with the ability to offer more broad-based litigation services to its clients in California."
"The combined firm provides Hancock with deeper bench strength and a national platform as well as an ability to serve and develop its insurance and reinsurance clients in Europe, Bermuda, and the United States," added Bonovitz, noting that Duane Morris's full-service London U.K. office has an existing business development presence.
The firm will gain a new Los Angeles office. Joining that office, in addition to the Hancock lawyers, will be Russell Roten, formerly a partner at Coudert Brothers, along with four other Coudert attorneys. The addition of Roten's group along with Hancock's insurance capabilities provides a great opportunity to better serve insurers facing complex bankruptcy issues involving such matters as asbestos. Duane Morris intends to expand the Los Angeles office focusing in the areas of commercial litigation and intellectual property. Duane Morris also will continue to expand the Las Vegas office, opened by Hancock earlier this year. The firm will maintain Hancock's current office in Lake Tahoe, California.
Said Philip Matthews, Hancock's Chairman, "Our merger with Duane Morris allows us to better serve our clients as a true full service, national law firm. Both Duane Morris' entrepreneurial culture and business-savvy approach to client service make it the perfect match for our practice and our clients."
"We thought long and hard about the best partner to achieve our clients' goals and our own," Matthews added. "There is no firm better suited to us than Duane Morris."
Hancock attorneys represent U.S. and international companies in a wide range of litigation and transactional areas. The firm is renowned for its work in insurance counseling and defending insurers and reinsurers in complex insurance coverage actions and arbitrations. Hancock is the top-ranked insurance firm in California, according to Chambers USA. Hancock attorneys have long represented Underwriters at Lloyd's, London, as well as other London, European, United States and Bermudian insurance and reinsurance companies, some of which are existing Duane Morris clients. The firm is considered to have one of the top insurance coverage and professional liability practices in the country.
For more information about the merger, please contact Joshua Peck at 215.979.7300.
About Duane Morris
Duane Morris LLP, one of the 100 largest law firms in the United States, is a full-service firm of over 600 lawyers. In addition, Duane Morris affiliates have over 50 professionals engaged in ancillary service businesses. The firm represents clients across the nation and around the world through a combination of offices in major U.S. markets and in London and a relationship with an international network of independent law firms.