Seattle firm adds Richmond and Chicago offices to its financial services headcount after getting acquired by McGonigle
AmLaw 100 firm Davis Wright Tremaine is acquiring financial services boutique McGonigle in a move that will more than double its banking and financial services practice and provide it with two bases to service its national clients.
A new office in Chicago will be the first for Davis Wright in the Midwest and another in Richmond, Virginia, will be its first in the Midwest after the merger takes effect 1 July.
As the sector continues to attract more regulatory attention, Davis Wright said that joining forces would allow the two firms to offer a wider array of services to clients in the financial services sector.
There are 44 lawyers at McGonigle, dispersed among five offices in New York, Washington, DC, San Francisco, Chicago and Richmond. According to Davis Wright, the firm will gain 22 lawyers in Washington, D.C., 15 in New York, four in Richmond and three in Chicago with this combination. Davis Wright's banking and financial services practice will grow to 70 lawyers under the new arrangement as part of its 550-lawyer platform.
The merger was described as a "landmark moment" for Davis Wright by managing partner Scott MacCormack.
Developing this powerful combination positions the firm to become the leading law firm when it comes to legal issues relating to the financial sector, he explained.
McGonigle was founded in 2010 and specializes in regulatory counsel and enforcement defense work with investment banks, brokers, hedge funds and blockchain companies, among others. After a merger in 2012 with securities law firm Krebsbach & Snyder, its flagship securities team grew by eight attorneys.
The merger will create a co-chair of Davis Wright's banking, financial services and security practice: Elizabeth Lan Davis and Bradford Hardin, who will join as McGonigle's chair.
Davis stated the two firms represented an "ideal match," given McGonigle's white collar and enforcement practice complementing Davis Wright's national litigation and corporate capabilities.
"We also will add expertise in areas ranging from broker-dealer to investment management to digital assets to Davis Wright's consumer finance and fintech practice," Davis concluded.
Researchers at Fairfax Associates published research on law firm mergers in October expecting the US law firm market to return to pre-pandemic levels in 2021. Yet eight mergers went live in Q3, including Holland & Knight's tie-up with Dallas-based energy expert Thompson & Knight.
Another US firm whose tie-up to Robbins Russel Englert Orseck & Untereiner is comparable to Davis Wright's was Kramer Levin, which signed with the Washington DC litigation boutique in March. In total, Kramer Levin's litigation and the appellate team have grown by 24 lawyers and increased its number of offices to four.