Reed Smith and Sachnoff & Weaver Announce Agreement to Merge

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Reed Smith, a top-25 international law firm with offices worldwide, and Sachnoff & Weaver, a leading Chicago law firm, have announced they have reached an agreement in principle to combine the practices of the two firms. The combination is subject to a vote by the partnerships of both firms, which will occur in November.

If approved, the combination will become effective March 1, 2007, giving Reed Smith a major presence in Chicago and the Midwest, where many of its clients are headquartered or have significant operations; it will also give Sachnoff the platform of an international law firm with offices around the world. When completed, the combined firm will have nearly 1,500 lawyers and revenues of more than $850 million.

“This move is aligned with our overall strategy to expand into the markets where our clients conduct their businesses and need our services most,” said Gregory B. Jordan, Reed Smith’s firmwide Managing Partner. “This is a step we’ve long anticipated and we are pleased with the prospect of combining with a strong and dynamic partner like Sachnoff & Weaver.”

“We are delighted to have an opportunity to join forces with a firm of Reed Smith’s caliber, commitment to client service and global reach,” said Austin Hirsch, CEO of Sachnoff & Weaver. “This combination gives us the resources to provide additional services to our existing clients – wherever they do business – and it provides our attorneys with numerous opportunities to expand their practices.”

Announcement of the pending Sachnoff & Weaver deal comes as Reed Smith completes the final countdown for its January 1, 2007 merger with Richards Butler in London, which will increase the number of Reed Smith offices to 20 and expand the size of the firm’s attorney base to nearly 1,400. Since 2000, Reed Smith’s leadership team has completed mergers with firms in California, London, Munich and Paris.

After January 1, London will be Reed Smith-s largest office.

Founded more than 40 years ago, Sachnoff & Weaver has more than 140 lawyers. With its current office in the Chicago Mercantile Exchange complex, the firm had record years for revenues and profitability in fiscal 2005 and fiscal 2006, fueled by a diverse base of high-quality clients served by both its varied business service practices and its high-profile litigation department.

“After months of intensive talks and in-depth examination, we are confident that Reed Smith is the right fit for us,” said Michael LoVallo, President of Sachnoff & Weaver. “Our two firms have highly compatible cultures, closely aligned practice groups, and a commitment to clients that we know will facilitate a smooth transition and integration.”

The merged entity will be known for a period of time in Chicago as Reed Smith Sachnoff Weaver.

More than 50 Fortune 500 companies are located in Chicago, as are several of the world’s great financial exchanges, numerous major financial institutions and many other businesses poised for growth. “We already count many Chicago and Midwest-based companies among our current clients,” said Eugene Tillman, Reed Smith’s Director of Legal Personnel. “A Chicago office would give us proximity to these existing clients and would allow us to serve numerous corporations which conduct their nationwide and international operations from Chicago and neighboring states.”

W. Thomas McGough, Jr., who at the end of the year will relinquish leadership of the Litigation Department of Reed Smith after nine years of service, is expected to play a key leadership role in the integration effort.

About Reed Smith

Reed Smith LLP is a top-25 international law firm with 1,100 lawyers located in 13 U.S. and four European cities. Upon completion of a merger with Richards Butler on January 1, 2007, the firm will have nearly 1,400 attorneys, and its largest office will be London. The integration will double Reed Smith’s presence in Paris and will add offices in Greece and the Middle East. The firm represents clients ranging from Fortune 100 to mid-market and emerging companies. They include financial services firms, life sciences companies, health care providers, technology companies and entrepreneurs, power generators and suppliers, manufacturers, real estate companies, universities, and nonprofit organizations throughout the world. For more information, visit

About Sachnoff & Weaver, Ltd.

Sachnoff & Weaver, Ltd. is one of Chicago’s leading mid-sized law firms, with more than 140 lawyers working with clients throughout the United States and abroad, offering extensive experience in securities and equity offerings; mergers and acquisitions; complex commercial litigation; estate and wealth planning; employment and human resources; intellectual property and technology; insurance coverage; and securities litigation. For more information, visit

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