Squire Sanders and Hammonds discuss potential merger to expand geographic reach, breadth of services for clients

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    Washington and London 25 August 2010. US-based Squire, Sanders & Dempsey L.L.P. and UK-based Hammonds LLP are evaluating the possibility of a merger that would create a dynamic international law firm with expanded global reach.

    If a merger were to proceed the combined firm would be among the top 50 global law firms with 37 offices located in 17 countries and with approximately 1,300 lawyers. Revenues would top US$625 million (£405 million).

    Squire Sanders Chair James J. Maiwurm and Hammonds Managing Partner Peter Crossley said that preliminary discussions showed that both firms are focused on strategic geographic and practice growth that meets multinational clients' desire to work with fewer law firms and with firms that have demonstrated global depth and breadth. The firms' leadership groups have identified other similarities, including compatible client bases and culture and, in particular, an emphasis on acting as a single firm focused on cost-effective client service.

    "Whilst we are still at an early stage, our discussions to date indicate that such a merger would appeal strongly to clients that want high-quality legal services from lawyers who have global experience and who understand and respect client demand for value," Maiwurm said. "Squire Sanders is committed to being a global firm. We need a more complete presence in the UK and Western Europe to complement our strength in Central and Eastern Europe. Hammonds has a well-developed platform that would complement our presence in Europe, would add to our capabilities in Asia and would enhance Squire Sanders' broad-based Latin America resources."

    Crossley said Hammonds' long-term strategy targets growth in the UK and Asia, expansion of the firm's footprint in Continental Europe and the establishment of closer ties with the United States, where Hammonds has a growing client base. "Operating as 'One Firm' around the world is a foundation of the Hammonds culture which is shared by Squire Sanders. There is an obvious cultural fit between the two firms", added Crossley.

    Maiwurm emphasised that the two firms share a common focus on providing value to clients, adding that he believed that a combined firm would present clients with a compelling value proposition in addition to expanded global coverage and depth.

    "We know that Hammonds shares the commitment to excellence that we demand of ourselves. But Hammonds, unlike many firms, also shares our understanding that excellence can and should combine with cost-effective, creative legal service," Maiwurm said.

    The firms emphasised that much remains to be done before bringing the merger to a partnership vote, but it is anticipated that partners in both firms would be asked to vote prior to the end of this calendar year.

    For further information contact:

    Samantha Rey, Communications Manager, Hammonds LLP, on 020 76551397 or samantha.rey@hammonds.com

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