This article is reprinted with permission from the October 2006 issue of TEQ magazine.
Success in business is often a matter of recognizing opportunities and seizing them. But rarely does such a high-impact opportunity present itself as the merger of two large firms, Buchanan Ingersoll PC and Klett Rooney Lieber & Schorling PC on July 1, 2006.
The merger made sense on several fronts. It was the largest combination the firms had ever done, and it was an obvious match in terms of culture, practice areas and strategic development. The newly combined firm of Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC is one of the 80 largest law firms in the United States, with approximately 550 attorneys and government relations professionals. The firm’s 313 attorneys in Pennsylvania also make it the largest in the Commonwealth.
For our Corporate Finance and Technology Group, the merger means greater depth and strength in our core areas of practice, such as venture capital financings, mergers and acquisitions, as well as securities and technology transactions. The combination also gives our corporate finance and technology lawyers new and broader capabilities in many of the supporting areas that are critical to our clients and the success of their corporate transactions. For example, we added considerable strength to our labor, employment and real estate practices, while also adding depth to our litigation, bankruptcy and government relations practices. We now have one of the largest government relations practices of any law firm in Pennsylvania with 35 attorneys and professionals.
COMPLEMENTARY OFFICES AND SERVICES
Klett Rooney, a 130-attorney firm, had offices that mirrored many of Buchanan’s in cities such as Philadelphia, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh and Wilmington, Del. In total, approximately 250 Klett Rooney attorneys, government affairs professionals and staff members joined the firm. Klett Rooney brought particularly strong practices in real estate, government affairs, litigation and labor that meshed well with Buchanan’s work in those areas. Klett also had significant bankruptcy, corporate, gaming, international business, health care, higher education and general liability defense practices, as well as a strong PUC practice in Harrisburg.
POWERFUL NAME RECOGNITION
The addition of the well-known Rooney name will help the firms integrate and move forward as one organization as quickly as possible. The merger signals a combination of two strong firms: the Rooney name, which is known and respected throughout the country, combined with the names Buchanan and Ingersoll, send a message of unity and excellence to our clients.
FULFILLING AMBITIOUS GOALS
The merger clearly advances the firm’s strategic goals. Primarily it affords us the opportunity to be dominant in Pennsylvania and the mid-Atlantic region. We have 34 lawyers in Harrisburg, 20 in Wilmington, Del., and more than 30 in New Jersey. Also, expanding our mid-Atlantic presence gives us the economic strength to grow in other markets which furthers the pursuit of our goal to be a strong national firm. Each firm brought specialties the other lacked, therefore tempering the firm in all areas of practice.
We’re excited because we believe these enhancements give us the ability to serve our combined client base on a broader and deeper basis. Generally, clients are seeking more depth and greater bench strength, which indicates that successful firms are going to have to be larger. The merger created a larger firm that consequently resulted in a well-rounded, mature portfolio of legal specialties. This varied experience gives the firm a prominent presence in every region our clients operate in. We look forward to the success the firm’s considerable resources will foster.